Role of Cysteine Residues in the Carboxyl-Terminus of the Follicle-Stimulating Hormone Receptor in Intracellular Traffic and Postendocytic Processing.
ABSTRACT: Posttranslational modifications occurring during the biosynthesis of G protein-coupled receptors include glycosylation and palmitoylation at conserved cysteine residues located in the carboxyl-terminus of the receptor. In a number of these receptors, these modifications play an important role in receptor function and particularly, in intracellular trafficking. In the present study, the three cysteine residues present in the carboxyl-terminus of the human FSHR were replaced with glycine by site-directed mutagenesis. Wild-type and mutant (Cys627/629/655Gly) FSHRs were then transiently expressed in HEK-293 cells and analyzed for cell-surface plasma membrane expression, agonist-stimulated signaling and internalization, and postendocytic processing in the absence and presence of lysosome and/or proteasome inhibitors. Compared with the wild-type FSHR, the triple mutant FSHR exhibited ~70% reduction in plasma membrane expression as well as a profound attenuation in agonist-stimulated cAMP production and ERK1/2 phosphorylation. Incubation of HEK-293 cells expressing the wild-type FSHR with 2-bromopalmitate (palmitoylation inhibitor) for 6 h, decreased plasma membrane expression of the receptor by ~30%. The internalization kinetics and ?-arrestin 1 and 2 recruitment were similar between the wild-type and triple mutant FSHR as disclosed by assays performed in non-equilibrium binding conditions and by confocal microscopy. Cells expressing the mutant FSHR recycled the internalized FSHR back to the plasma membrane less efficiently than those expressing the wild-type FSHR, an effect that was counteracted by proteasome but not by lysosome inhibition. These results indicate that replacement of the cysteine residues present in the carboxyl-terminus of the FSHR, impairs receptor trafficking from the endoplasmic reticulum/Golgi apparatus to the plasma membrane and its recycling from endosomes back to the cell surface following agonist-induced internalization. Since in the FSHR these cysteine residues are S-palmitoylated, the data presented emphasize on this posttranslational modification as an important factor for both upward and downward trafficking of this receptor.
Project description:Desmosomes are prominent adhesive junctions present between many epithelial cells as well as cardiomyocytes. The mechanisms controlling desmosome assembly and remodeling in epithelial and cardiac tissue are poorly understood. We recently identified protein palmitoylation as a mechanism regulating desmosome dynamics. In this study, we have focused on the palmitoylation of the desmosomal cadherin desmoglein-2 (Dsg2) and characterized the role that palmitoylation of Dsg2 plays in its localization and stability in cultured cells. We identified two cysteine residues in the juxtamembrane (intracellular anchor) domain of Dsg2 that, when mutated, eliminate its palmitoylation. These cysteine residues are conserved in all four desmoglein family members. Although mutant Dsg2 localizes to endogenous desmosomes, there is a significant delay in its incorporation into junctions, and the mutant is also present in a cytoplasmic pool. Triton X-100 solubility assays demonstrate that mutant Dsg2 is more soluble than wild-type protein. Interestingly, trafficking of the mutant Dsg2 to the cell surface was delayed, and a pool of the non-palmitoylated Dsg2 co-localized with lysosomal markers. Taken together, these data suggest that palmitoylation of Dsg2 regulates protein transport to the plasma membrane. Modulation of the palmitoylation status of desmosomal cadherins can affect desmosome dynamics.
Project description:Regulator of G-protein signaling (RGS) proteins are potent inhibitors of heterotrimeric G-protein signaling. RGS4 attenuates G-protein activity in several tissues. Previous work demonstrated that cysteine palmitoylation on residues in the amino-terminal (Cys-2 and Cys-12) and core domains (Cys-95) of RGS4 is important for protein stability, plasma membrane targeting, and GTPase activating function. To date Cys-2 has been the priority target for RGS4 regulation by palmitoylation based on its putative role in stabilizing the RGS4 protein. Here, we investigate differences in the contribution of Cys-2 and Cys-12 to the intracellular localization and function of RGS4. Inhibition of RGS4 palmitoylation with 2-bromopalmitate dramatically reduced its localization to the plasma membrane. Similarly, mutation of the RGS4 amphipathic helix (L23D) prevented membrane localization and its G(q) inhibitory function. Together, these data suggest that both RGS4 palmitoylation and the amphipathic helix domain are required for optimal plasma membrane targeting and function of RGS4. Mutation of Cys-12 decreased RGS4 membrane targeting to a similar extent as 2-bromopalmitate, resulting in complete loss of its G(q) inhibitory function. Mutation of Cys-2 did not impair plasma membrane targeting but did partially impair its function as a G(q) inhibitor. Comparison of the endosomal distribution pattern of wild type and mutant RGS4 proteins with TGN38 indicated that palmitoylation of these two cysteines contributes differentially to the intracellular trafficking of RGS4. These data show for the first time that Cys-2 and Cys-12 play markedly different roles in the regulation of RGS4 membrane localization, intracellular trafficking, and G(q) inhibitory function via mechanisms that are unrelated to RGS4 protein stabilization.
Project description:Palmitoylation is a posttranslational modification that regulates protein trafficking and stability. In this study we investigated whether the endosomal soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (SNARE) proteins syntaxin 7 and syntaxin 8 are modified with palmitate. Using metabolic labeling and site-directed mutagenesis, we show that human syntaxins 7 and 8 are modified with palmitate through a thioester linkage. Palmitoylation is dependent upon cysteine 239 of human syntaxin 7 and cysteine 214 of syntaxin 8, residues that are located on the cytoplasmic face of the transmembrane domain (TMD). Palmitoylation of syntaxin 8 is minimally affected by the Golgi-disturbing agent brefeldin A (BFA), whereas BFA dramatically inhibits palmitoylation of syntaxin7. The differential effect of BFA suggests that palmitoylation of syntaxins 7 and 8 occurs in distinct subcellular compartments. Palmitoylation does not affect the rate of protein turnover of syntaxins 7 and 8 nor does it influence the steady-state localization of syntaxin 8 in late endosomes. Syntaxin 7 actively cycles between endosomes and the plasma membrane. Palmitoylation-defective syntaxin 7 is selectively retained on the plasma membrane, suggesting that palmitoylation is important for intercompartmental transport of syntaxin 7.
Project description:Most G-protein-coupled receptors have conserved cysteine residues in their C-terminal cytoplasmic domain that appear to be generally palmitoylated. An example is the human arginine vasopressin V2 receptor with cysteine residues at positions 341 and 342. Site-directed mutagenesis of the putative palmitoylation site was used to study the significance of palmitoylation for the V2 receptor. A multifunctional expression plasmid was constructed by cloning the V2 receptor cDNA into the vector pCDNAI.Neo. The resulting plasmid allowed site-directed mutagenesis experiments without subcloning, and stable and transient expression of the V2 receptor in Ltk- and COS.M6 cells respectively. The conserved cysteine residues Cys-341 and Cys-342 were placed by serine residues, yielding the single mutants C-341S and C-342S and the double mutant C-341S/C-342S. Functional expression in stably transfected Ltk- cells showed that the affinity of the three mutant receptors for arginine vasopressin was not altered. In contrast with the activation of adenylate cyclase through beta 2 adrenergic receptors, arginine vasopressin stimulated adenylate cyclase to the same extent and with similar EC50 values in both wild-type and mutant receptors. Transient expression of the C-341S/C-342S mutant receptor in COS.M6 cells confirmed an unaltered affinity of the mutant receptor for arginine vasopressin. However, the number of arginine vasopressin-binding sites on the cell surface was reduced by 30%, suggesting that the transport of the mutant receptor to the cell surface was impaired. In addition, the decrease in detectable arginine vasopressin-binding sites on the cell surface following pre-exposure to hormone was reduced, indicating that the sequestration/internalization of the mutant receptor on the cell surface was affected. The present data indicate that palmitoylation of the V2 receptor is important for intracellular trafficking and/or sequestration/internalization but not for agonist binding or activation of the Gs/adenylate cyclase system.
Project description:Multinucleated skeletal muscle fibers form through the fusion of myoblasts during development and regeneration. Previous studies identified myomaker (Tmem8c) as a muscle-specific membrane protein essential for fusion. However, the specific function of myomaker and how its function is regulated are unknown. To explore these questions, we first examined the cellular localization of endogenous myomaker. Two independent antibodies showed that whereas myomaker does localize to the plasma membrane in cultured myoblasts, the protein also resides in the Golgi and post-Golgi vesicles. These results raised questions regarding the precise cellular location of myomaker function and mechanisms that govern myomaker trafficking between these cellular compartments. Using a synchronized fusion assay, we demonstrated that myomaker functions at the plasma membrane to drive fusion. Trafficking of myomaker is regulated by palmitoylation of C-terminal cysteine residues that allows Golgi localization. Moreover, dissection of the C terminus revealed that palmitoylation was not sufficient for complete fusogenic activity suggesting a function for other amino acids within this C-terminal region. Indeed, C-terminal mutagenesis analysis highlighted the importance of a C-terminal leucine for function. These data reveal that myoblast fusion requires myomaker activity at the plasma membrane and is potentially regulated by proper myomaker trafficking.
Project description:Current evidence indicates that G protein-coupled receptors form dimers that may affect biogenesis and membrane targeting of the complexed receptors. We here analyzed whether expression-deficient follicle-stimulating hormone receptor (FSHR) mutants exert dominant negative actions on wild-type FSHR cell surface membrane expression. Co-transfection of constant amounts of wild-type receptor cDNA and increasing quantities of mutant (R556A or R618A) FSHR cDNAs progressively decreased agonist-stimulated cAMP accumulation, [(125)I]-FSH binding, and plasma membrane expression of the mature wild-type FSHR species. Co-transfection of wild-type FSHR fragments involving transmembrane domains 5-6, or transmembrane domain 7 and/or the carboxyl-terminus specifically rescued wild-type FSHR expression from the transdominant inhibition by the mutants. Mutant FSHRs also inhibited function of the luteinizing hormone receptor but not that of the thyrotropin receptor or non-related receptors. Defective intracellular transport and/or interference with proper maturation due to formation of misfolded mutant:wild-type receptor complexes may explain the negative effects provoked by the altered FSHRs.
Project description:SNAP25 regulates membrane fusion events at the plasma membrane and in the endosomal system, and a functional pool of the protein is delivered to recycling endosomes (REs) and the trans Golgi network (TGN) through an ARF6-dependent cycling pathway. SNAP25 is a peripheral membrane protein, and palmitoylation of a cluster of four cysteine residues mediates its stable association with the membrane. Here, we report that palmitoylation also determines the precise intracellular distribution of SNAP25, and that mutating single palmitoylation sites enhances the amount of SNAP25 at the RE and TGN. The farnesylated CAAX motif from Hras was ligated onto a SNAP25 mutant truncated immediately distal to the cysteine-rich domain. This construct displayed the same intracellular distribution as full-length SNAP25, and decreasing the number of cysteine residues in this construct increased its association with the RE and TGN, confirming the dominant role of the cysteine-rich domain in directing the intracellular distribution of SNAP25. Marked differences in the localisations of SNAP25-CAAX and Hras constructs, each with two palmitoylation sites, were observed, showing that subtle differences in palmitoylated sequences can have a major impact upon intracellular targeting. We propose that the cysteine-rich domain of SNAP25 is designed to facilitate the dual function of this SNARE protein at the plasma membrane and endosomes, and that dynamic palmitoylation acts as a mechanism to regulate the precise intracellular patterning of SNAP25.
Project description:The human prostacyclin receptor (hIP) undergoes agonist-induced internalization and subsequent recyclization in slowly recycling endosomes involving its direct physical interaction with Rab11a. Moreover, interaction with Rab11a localizes to a 22-residue putative Rab11 binding domain (RBD) within the carboxyl-terminal tail of the hIP, proximal to the transmembrane 7 (TM7) domain. Because the proposed RBD contains Cys(308) and Cys(311), in addition to Cys(309), that are known to undergo palmitoylation, we sought to identify the structure/function determinants of the RBD, including the influence of palmitoylation, on agonist-induced trafficking of the hIP. Through complementary approaches in yeast and mammalian cells along with computational structural studies, the RBD was localized to a 14-residue domain, between Val(299) and Leu(312), and proposed to be organized into an eighth alpha-helical domain (alpha-helix 8), comprising Val(299)-Val(307), adjacent to the palmitoylated residues at Cys(308)-Cys(311). From mutational and [(3)H]palmitate metabolic labeling studies, it is proposed that palmitoylation at Cys(311) in addition to agonist-regulated deacylation at Cys(309) > Cys(308) may dynamically position alpha-helix 8 in proximity to Rab11a, to regulate agonist-induced intracellular trafficking of the hIP. Moreover, Ala-scanning mutagenesis identified several hydrophobic residues within alpha-helix 8 as necessary for the interaction with Rab11a. Given the diverse membership of the G protein-coupled receptor superfamily, of which many members are also predicted to contain an alpha-helical 8 domain proximal to TM7 and, often, adjacent to palmitoylable cysteine(s), the identification of a functional role for alpha-helix 8, as exemplified as an RBD for the hIP, is likely to have broader significance for certain members of the superfamily.
Project description:Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) cell surface expression levels are modulated during nicotine dependence and multiple disorders of the nervous system, but the mechanisms underlying nAChR trafficking remain unclear. To determine the role of cysteine residues, including their palmitoylation, on neuronal ?4 nAChR subunit maturation and cell surface trafficking, the cysteines in the two intracellular regions of the receptor were replaced with serines using site-directed mutagenesis. Palmitoylation is a post-translational modification that regulates membrane receptor trafficking and function. Metabolic labeling with [(3)H]palmitate determined that the cysteine in the cytoplasmic loop between transmembrane domains 1 and 2 (M1-M2) is palmitoylated. When this cysteine is mutated to a serine, producing a depalmitoylated ?4 nAChR, total protein expression decreases, but surface expression increases compared with wild-type ?4 levels, as determined by Western blotting and enzyme-linked immunoassays, respectively. The cysteines in the M3-M4 cytoplasmic loop do not appear to be palmitoylated, but replacing all of the cysteines in the loop with serines increases total and cell surface expression. When all of the intracellular cysteines in both loops are mutated to serines, there is no change in total expression, but there is an increase in surface expression. Calcium accumulation assays and high affinity binding for [(3)H]epibatidine determined that all mutants retain functional activity. Thus, our results identify a novel palmitoylation site on cysteine 273 in the M1-M2 loop of the ?4 nAChR and determine that cysteines in both intracellular loops are regulatory factors in total and cell surface protein expression of the ?4?2 nAChR.
Project description:The SNAREs SNAP25 and SNAP23 are proteins that are initially cytosolic after translation, but then become stably attached to the cell membrane through palmitoylation of cysteine residues. For palmitoylation to occur, membrane association is a prerequisite, but it is unclear which motif may increase the affinities of the proteins for the target membrane. In experiments with rat neuroendocrine cells, we find that a few basic amino acids in the cysteine-rich region of SNAP25 and SNAP23 are essential for plasma membrane targeting. Reconstitution of membrane-protein binding in a liposome assay shows that the mechanism involves protein electrostatics between basic amino acid residues and acidic lipids such as phosphoinositides that play a primary role in these interactions. Hence, we identify an electrostatic anchoring mechanism underlying initial plasma membrane contact by SNARE proteins, which subsequently become palmitoylated at the plasma membrane.