Mass spectrometric measurement of neuropeptide secretion in the crab, Cancer borealis, by in vivo microdialysis.
ABSTRACT: Neuropeptides (NPs), a unique and highly important class of signaling molecules across the animal kingdom, have been extensively characterized in the neuronal tissues of various crustaceans. Because many NPs are released into circulating fluid (hemolymph) and travel to distant sites in order to exhibit physiological effects, it is important to measure the secretion of these NPs from living animals. In this study, we report on extensive characterization of NPs released in the crab Cancer borealis by utilizing in vivo microdialysis to sample NPs from the hemolymph. We determined the necessary duration for collection of microdialysis samples, enabling more comprehensive identification of NP content while maintaining the temporal resolution of sampling. Analysis of in vivo microdialysates using a hybrid quadrupole-Orbitrap™ Q-Exactive mass spectrometer revealed that more than 50 neuropeptides from 9 peptide families-including the allatostatin, RFamide, orcokinin, tachykinin-related peptide and RYamide families - were released into the circulatory system. The presence of these peptides both in neuronal tissues as well as in hemolymph indicates their putative hormonal roles, a finding that merits further investigation. Preliminary quantitative measurement of these identified NPs suggested several potential candidates that maybe associated with the circadian rhythm in Cancer borealis.
Project description:Microdialysis is a useful technique for sampling neuropeptides in vivo, and decapod crustaceans are important model organisms for studying how these peptides regulate physiological processes. However, to date, no microdialysis procedure has been reported for sampling neuropeptides from crustaceans. Here we report the first application of microdialysis to sample neuropeptides from the hemolymph of the crab, Cancer borealis. Microdialysis probes were implanted into the pericardial region of live crabs, and the resulting dialysates were desalted, concentrated, and analyzed by LC-ESI-QTOF and MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometry. Analysis of in vitro microdialysates of hemolymph revealed more neuropeptides and fewer protein fragments than hemolymph prepared by typical analysis methods. Mass spectra of in vivo dialysates displayed neuropeptides from 10 peptide families, including the RFamide, allatostatin, and orcokinin families. In addition, GAHKNYLRFa, SDRNFLRFa, and TNRNFLRFa were sequenced from hemolymph dialysates. The detection of these neuropeptides in the hemolymph suggests that they are functioning as hormones as well as neuromodulators. In vivo microdialysis offers the capability to further study these and other neuropeptides in crustacean hemolymph, complementing current tissue-based studies and extending our knowledge of hormonal regulation of physiological states.
Project description:Temperature changes influence the reaction rates of all biological processes, which can pose dramatic challenges to cold-blooded organisms, and the capability to adapt to temperature fluctuations is crucial for the survival of these animals. In order to understand the roles that neuropeptides play in the temperature stress response, we employed a mass spectrometry-based approach to investigate the neuropeptide changes associated with acute temperature elevation in three neural tissues from the Jonah crab Cancer borealis. At high temperature, members from two neuropeptide families, including RFamide and RYamide, were observed to be significantly reduced in one of the neuroendocrine structures, the pericardial organ, while several orcokinin peptides were detected to be decreased in another major neuroendocrine organ, the sinus gland. These results implicate that the observed neuropeptides may be involved with temperature perturbation response via hormonal regulation. Furthermore, a temperature stress marker peptide with the primary sequence of SFRRMGGKAQ (m/z 1137.7) was detected and de novo sequenced in the circulating fluid (hemolymph) from animals under thermal perturbation.
Project description:Neuropeptides are often released into circulatory fluid (hemolymph) to act as circulating hormones and regulate many physiological processes. However, the detection of these low-level peptide hormones in circulation is often complicated by high salt interference and rapid degradation of proteins and peptides in crude hemolymph extracts. In this study, we systematically evaluated three different neuropeptide extraction protocols and developed a simple and effective hemolymph preparation method suitable for MALDI MS profiling of neuropeptides by combining acid-induced abundant protein precipitation/depletion, ultrafiltration, and C(18) micro-column desalting. In hemolymph samples collected from the crab Cancer borealis, several secreted neuropeptides have been detected, including members from at least five neuropeptide families, such as RFamide, allatostatin, orcokinin, tachykinin-related peptide (TRP), and crustacean cardioactive peptide (CCAP). Furthermore, two TRPs were detected in the hemolymph collected from food-deprived animals, suggesting the potential role of these neuropeptides in feeding regulation. In addition, a novel peptide with a Lys-Phe-amide C-terminus was identified and de novo sequenced directly from the Cancer borealis hemolymph sample. To better characterize the hemolymph peptidome, we also identified several abundant peptide signals in C. borealis hemolymph that were assigned to protein degradation products. Collectively, our study describes a simple and effective sample preparation method for neuropeptide analysis directly from crude crustacean hemolymph. Numerous endogenous neuropeptides were detected, including both known ones and new peptides whose functions remain to be characterized.
Project description:The crustacean stomatogastric ganglion (STG) is a valuable model for understanding circuit dynamics in neuroscience as it contains a small number of neurons, all easily distinguishable and most of which contribute to two complementary feeding-related neural circuits. These circuits are modulated by numerous neuropeptides, with many gaining access to the STG as hemolymph-transported hormones. Previous work characterized neuropeptides in the hemolymph of the crab Cancer borealis but was limited by low peptide abundance in the presence of a complex biological matrix and the propensity for rapid peptide degradation. To improve their detection, a data-independent acquisition (DIA) mass spectrometry (MS) method was implemented. This approach improved the number of neuropeptides detected by approximately twofold and showed greater reproducibility between experimental and biological replicates. This method was then used to profile neuropeptides at different stages of the feeding process, including hemolymph from crabs that were unfed, or 0 min, 15 min, 1 h, and 2 h post-feeding. The results show differences both in the presence and relative abundance of neuropeptides at the various time points. Additionally, 96 putative neuropeptide sequences were identified with de novo sequencing, indicating there may be more key modulators within this system than is currently known. These results suggest that a distinct cohort of neuropeptides provides modulation to the STG at different times in the feeding process, providing groundwork for targeted follow-up electrophysiological studies to better understand the functional role of circulating hormones in the neural basis of feeding behavior.
Project description:Food consumption is an important behavior that is regulated by an intricate array of neuropeptides (NPs). Although many feeding-related NPs have been identified in mammals, precise mechanisms are unclear and difficult to study in mammals, as current methods are not highly multiplexed and require extensive a priori knowledge about analytes. New advances in data-independent acquisition (DIA) MS/MS and the open-source quantification software Skyline have opened up the possibility to identify hundreds of compounds and quantify them from a single DIA MS/MS run. An untargeted DIA MS(E) quantification method using Skyline software for multiplexed, discovery-driven quantification was developed and found to produce linear calibration curves for peptides at physiologically relevant concentrations using a protein digest as internal standard. By using this method, preliminary relative quantification of the crab Cancer borealis neuropeptidome (<2 kDa, 137 peptides from 18 families) was possible in microdialysates from 8 replicate feeding experiments. Of these NPs, 55 were detected with an average mass error below 10 ppm. The time-resolved profiles of relative concentration changes for 6 are shown, and there is great potential for the use of this method in future experiments to aid in correlation of NP changes with behavior. This work presents an unbiased approach to winnowing candidate NPs related to a behavior of interest in a functionally relevant manner, and demonstrates the success of such a UPLC-MS(E) quantification method using the open source software Skyline.
Project description:Microdialysis is a powerful method for in vivo neurochemical analyses. It allows fluid sampling in a dynamic manner in specific brain regions over an extended period of time. A particular focus has been the neurochemical analysis of extracellular fluids to explore central nervous system functions. Brain microdialysis recovers neurotransmitters, low-molecular-weight neuromodulators and neuropeptides of special interest when studying behavior and drug effects. Other small molecules, such as central metabolites, are typically not assessed despite their potential to yield important information related to brain metabolism and activity in selected brain regions. We have implemented a liquid chromatography online mass spectrometry metabolomics platform for an expanded analysis of mouse brain microdialysates. The method is sensitive and delivers information for a far greater number of analytes than commonly used electrochemical and fluorescent detection or biochemical assays. The metabolomics platform was applied to the analysis of microdialysates in a foot shock-induced mouse model of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The rich metabolite data information was then used to delineate affected prefrontal molecular pathways that reflect individual susceptibility for developing PTSD-like symptoms. We demonstrate that hypothesis-free metabolomics can be adapted to the analysis of microdialysates for the discovery of small molecules with functional significance.
Project description:Microdialysis (MD) is a useful sampling tool for many applications due to its ability to permit sampling from an animal concurrent with normal activity. MD is of particular importance in the field of neuroscience, in which it is used to sample neurotransmitters (NTs) while the animal is behaving in order to correlate dynamic changes in NTs with behavior. One important class of signaling molecules, the neuropeptides (NPs), however, presented significant challenges when studied with MD, due to the low relative recovery (RR) of NPs by this technique. Affinity-enhanced microdialysis (AE-MD) has previously been used to improve recovery of NPs and similar molecules. For AE-MD, an affinity agent (AA), such as an antibody-coated particle or free antibody, is added to the liquid perfusing the MD probe. This AA provides an additional mass transport driving force for analyte to pass through the dialysis membrane and thus increases the RR. In this work, a variety of AAs have been investigated for AE-MD of NPs in vitro and in vivo, including particles with C18 surface functionality and antibody-coated particles. Antibody-coated magnetic nanoparticles (AbMnP) provided the best RR enhancement in vitro, with statistically significant (p < 0.05) enhancements for 4 out of 6 NP standards tested, and RR increases up to 41-fold. These particles were then used for in vivo MD in the Jonah crab, Cancer borealis, during a feeding study, with mass spectrometric (MS) detection. 31 NPs were detected in a 30 min collection sample, compared to 17 when no AA was used. The use of AbMnP also increased the temporal resolution from 4 to 18 h in previous studies to just 30 min in this study. The levels of NPs detected were also sufficient for reliable quantitation with the MS system in use, permitting quantitative analysis of the concentration changes for 7 identified NPs on a 30 min time course during feeding.
Project description:The crab <i>Cancer borealis</i> nervous system is an important model for understanding neural circuit dynamics and modulation, but the identity of neuromodulatory substances and their influence on circuit dynamics in this system remains incomplete, particularly with respect to behavioral state-dependent modulation. Therefore, we used a multifaceted mass spectrometry (MS) method to identify neuropeptides that differentiate the unfed and fed states. Duplex stable isotope labeling revealed that the abundance of 80 of 278 identified neuropeptides was distinct in ganglia and/or neurohemal tissue from fed vs unfed animals. MS imaging revealed that an additional 7 and 11 neuropeptides exhibited altered spatial distributions in the brain and the neuroendocrine pericardial organs (POs), respectively, during these two feeding states. Furthermore, <i>de novo</i> sequencing yielded 69 newly identified putative neuropeptides that may influence feeding state-related neuromodulation. Two of these latter neuropeptides were determined to be upregulated in PO tissue from fed crabs, and one of these two peptides influenced heartbeat in <i>ex vivo</i> preparations. Overall, the results presented here identify a cohort of neuropeptides that are poised to influence feeding-related behaviors, providing valuable opportunities for future functional studies.
Project description:Orcokinin neuropeptides are conserved among ecdysozoans, but their functions are incompletely understood. Here, we report a role for orcokinin neuropeptides in the regulation of sleep in the nematode <i>Caenorhabditis elegans</i>. The <i>C. elegans</i> orcokinin peptides, which are encoded by the <i>nlp-14</i> and <i>nlp-15</i> genes, are necessary and sufficient for quiescent behaviors during developmentally timed sleep (DTS) as well as during stress-induced sleep (SIS). The five orcokinin neuropeptides encoded by <i>nlp-14</i> have distinct but overlapping functions in the regulation of movement and defecation quiescence during SIS. We suggest that orcokinins may regulate behavioral components of sleep-like states in nematodes and other ecdysozoans.
Project description:Herein we report a highly efficient and reliable membrane-assisted capillary isoelectric focusing (MA-CIEF) system being coupled with MALDI-FTMS for the analysis of complex neuropeptide mixtures. The new interface consists of two membrane-coated joints made near each end of the capillary for applying high voltage, while the capillary ends were placed in the two reservoirs which were filled with anolyte (acid) and catholyte (base) to provide pH difference. Optimizations of CIEF conditions and comparison with conventional CIEF were carried out by using bovine serum albumin (BSA) tryptic peptides. It was shown that the MA-CIEF could provide more efficient, reliable and faster separation with improved sequence coverage when coupled to MALDI-FTMS. Analyses of orcokinin family neuropeptides from crabs Cancer borealis and Callinectes sapidus brain extracts have been conducted using the established MA-CIEF/MALDI-FTMS platform. Increased number of neuropeptides was observed with significantly enhanced MS signal in comparison with direct analysis by MALDI-FTMS. The results highlighted the potential of MA-CIEF as an efficient fractionation tool for coupling to MALDI MS for neuropeptide analysis.