Synthesis and transfer of galactolipids in the chloroplast envelope membranes of Arabidopsis thaliana.
ABSTRACT: Galactolipids [monogalactosyldiacylglycerol (MGDG) and digalactosyldiacylglycerol (DGDG)] are the hallmark lipids of photosynthetic membranes. The galactolipid synthases MGD1 and DGD1 catalyze consecutive galactosyltransfer reactions but localize to the inner and outer chloroplast envelopes, respectively, necessitating intermembrane lipid transfer. Here we show that the N-terminal sequence of DGD1 (NDGD1) is required for galactolipid transfer between the envelopes. Different diglycosyllipid synthases (DGD1, DGD2, and Chloroflexus glucosyltransferase) were introduced into the dgd1-1 mutant of Arabidopsis in fusion with N-terminal extensions (NDGD1 and NDGD2) targeting to the outer envelope. Reconstruction of DGDG synthesis in the outer envelope membrane was observed only with diglycosyllipid synthase fusion proteins carrying NDGD1, indicating that NDGD1 enables galactolipid translocation between envelopes. NDGD1 binds to phosphatidic acid (PA) in membranes and mediates PA-dependent membrane fusion in vitro. These findings provide a mechanism for the sorting and selective channeling of lipid precursors between the galactolipid pools of the two envelope membranes.
Project description:Etioplasts developed in angiosperm cotyledon cells in darkness rapidly differentiate into chloroplasts with illumination. This process involves dynamic transformation of internal membrane structures from the prolamellar bodies (PLBs) and prothylakoids (PTs) in etioplasts to thylakoid membranes in chloroplasts. Although two galactolipids, monogalactosyldiacylglycerol (MGDG) and digalactosyldiacylglycerol (DGDG), are predominant lipid constituents of membranes in both etioplasts and chloroplasts, their roles in the structural and functional transformation of internal membranes during etioplast-to-chloroplast differentiation are unknown. We previously reported that a 36% loss of MGDG by an artificial microRNA targeting major MGDG synthase (amiR-MGD1) only slightly affected PLB structures but strongly impaired PT formation and protochlorophyllide biosynthesis. Meanwhile, strong DGDG deficiency in a DGDG synthase mutant (dgd1) disordered the PLB lattice structure in addition to impaired PT development and protochlorophyllide biosynthesis. In this study, thylakoid biogenesis after PLB disassembly with illumination was strongly perturbed by amiR-MGD1. The amiR-MGD1 expression impaired the accumulation of Chl and the major light-harvesting complex II protein (LHCB1), which may inhibit rapid transformation from disassembled PLBs to the thylakoid membrane. As did amiR-MGD1 expression, dgd1 mutation impaired the accumulation of Chl and LHCB1 during etioplast-to-chloroplast differentiation. Furthermore, unlike in amiR-MGD1 seedlings, in dgd1 seedlings, disassembly of PLBs after illumination was retarded. Because DGDG but not MGDG prefers to form the bilayer lipid phase in membranes, the MGDG-to-DGDG ratio may strongly affect the transformation of PLBs to the thylakoid membrane during etioplast-to-chloroplast differentiation.
Project description:One of the major characteristics of chloroplast membranes is their enrichment in galactoglycerolipids, monogalactosyldiacylglycerol (MGDG), and digalactosyldiacylglycerol (DGDG), whereas phospholipids are poorly represented, mainly as phosphatidylglycerol (PG). All these lipids are synthesized in the chloroplast envelope, but galactolipid synthesis is also partially dependent on phospholipid synthesis localized in non-plastidial membranes. MGDG synthesis was previously shown essential for chloroplast development. In this report, we analyze the regulation of MGDG synthesis by phosphatidic acid (PA), which is a general precursor in the synthesis of all glycerolipids and is also a signaling molecule in plants. We demonstrate that under physiological conditions, MGDG synthesis is not active when the MGDG synthase enzyme is supplied with its substrates only, i.e. diacylglycerol and UDP-gal. In contrast, PA activates the enzyme when supplied. This is shown in leaf homogenates, in the chloroplast envelope, as well as on the recombinant MGDG synthase, MGD1. PG can also activate the enzyme, but comparison of PA and PG effects on MGD1 activity indicates that PA and PG proceed through different mechanisms, which are further differentiated by enzymatic analysis of point-mutated recombinant MGD1s. Activation of MGD1 by PA and PG is proposed as an important mechanism coupling phospholipid and galactolipid syntheses in plants.
Project description:The thylakoid membranes of the chloroplast harbor the photosynthetic machinery that converts light into chemical energy. Chloroplast membranes are unique in their lipid makeup, which is dominated by the galactolipids mono- and digalactosyldiacylglycerol (MGDG and DGDG). The most abundant galactolipid, MGDG, is assembled through both plastid and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) pathways in Arabidopsis, resulting in distinguishable molecular lipid species. Phosphatidic acid (PA) is the first glycerolipid formed by the plastid galactolipid biosynthetic pathway. It is converted to substrate diacylglycerol (DAG) for MGDG Synthase (MGD1) which adds to it a galactose from UDP-Gal. The enzymatic reactions yielding these galactolipids have been well established. However, auxiliary or regulatory factors are largely unknown. We identified a predicted rhomboid-like protease 10 (RBL10), located in plastids of Arabidopsis thaliana, that affects galactolipid biosynthesis likely through intramembrane proteolysis. Plants with T-DNA disruptions in RBL10 have greatly decreased 16:3 (acyl carbons:double bonds) and increased 18:3 acyl chain abundance in MGDG of leaves. Additionally, rbl10-1 mutants show reduced [14 C]-acetate incorporation into MGDG during pulse-chase labeling, indicating a reduced flux through the plastid galactolipid biosynthesis pathway. While plastid MGDG biosynthesis is blocked in rbl10-1 mutants, they are capable of synthesizing PA, as well as producing normal amounts of MGDG by compensating with ER-derived lipid precursors. These findings link this predicted protease to the utilization of PA for plastid galactolipid biosynthesis potentially revealing a regulatory mechanism in chloroplasts.
Project description:Galactolipids represent the most abundant lipid class in thylakoid membranes, where oxygenic photosynthesis is performed. The identification of galactolipids at specific sites within photosynthetic complexes by x-ray crystallography implies specific roles for galactolipids during photosynthetic electron transport. The preference for galactose and not for the more abundant sugar glucose in thylakoid lipids and their specific roles in photosynthesis are not understood. Introduction of a bacterial glucosyltransferase from Chloroflexus aurantiacus into the galactolipid-deficient dgd1 mutant of Arabidopsis thaliana resulted in the accumulation of a glucose-containing lipid in the thylakoids. At the same time, the growth defect of the dgd1 mutant was complemented. However, the degree of trimerization of light-harvesting complex II and the photosynthetic quantum yield of transformed dgd1 plants were only partially restored. These results indicate that specific interactions of the galactolipid head group with photosynthetic protein complexes might explain the preference for galactose in thylakoid lipids of higher plants. Therefore, galactose in thylakoid lipids can be exchanged with glucose without severe effects on growth, but the presence of galactose is crucial to maintain maximal photosynthetic efficiency.
Project description:Chloroplast membranes have a high content of the uncharged galactolipids monogalactosyldiacylglycerol (MGDG) and digalactosyldiacylglycerol (DGDG). These galactolipids are essential for the biogenesis of plastids and functioning of the photosynthetic machinery. A monotopic glycosyltransferase, monogalactosyldiacylglycerol synthase synthesizes the bulk of MGDG. It is embedded in the outer leaflet of the inner envelope membrane of chloroplasts. The protein transfers a galactose residue from UDP-galactose to diacylglycerol (DAG); it needs anionic lipids such as phosphatidylglycerol (PG) to be active. The intricacy of the organization and the process of active complex assembly and synthesis have been investigated at the Coarse-Grained and All-Atom of computer simulation levels to cover large spatial and temporal scales. The following self-assembly process and catalytic events can be drawn; (1) in the membrane, in the absence of protein, there is a spontaneous formation of PG clusters to which DAG molecules associate, (2) a reorganization of the clusters occurs in the vicinity of the protein once inserted in the membrane, (3) an accompanying motion of the catalytic domain of the protein brings DAG in the proper position for the formation of the active complex MGD1/UDP-Gal/DAG/PG for which an atomistic model of interaction is proposed.
Project description:KEY MESSAGE:Here we show that accumulation of galactose-containing lipids in plastid membranes in shoots and the other membranes in roots maintains Arabidopsis growth under acidic stress and acidic phosphate deficiency. Soil acidification and phosphate deficiency are closely related to each other in natural environments. In addition to the toxicity of high proton concentrations, acid soil can lead to imbalances of ion availability and nutritional deficiencies, including inorganic phosphate (Pi). Among plants, activation of non-phosphorus-containing galactolipid, digalactosyldiacylglycerol (DGDG), synthesis concomitant with phospholipid degradation, namely membrane lipid remodeling, is crucial for coping with Pi starvation. However, regulation mechanisms of membrane lipid composition during acidic stress have not been clarified. Here, we investigated lipid metabolism in Arabidopsis thaliana grown under acidic stress with or without Pi. Under Pi-sufficient acidic conditions, DGDG was increased in shoot membranes, and some Pi starvation-responsive genes that are involved in lipid remodeling were upregulated without reducing Pi content in leaves. In contrast, under acidic Pi deficiency, membrane lipid remodeling in roots was partially repressed at a lower external pH. Nevertheless, phenotypic comparison between wild type and the double mutant of MGD2/3, which are responsible for DGDG accumulation during Pi starvation, indicated that the complete absence of lipid remodeling in roots resulted in a loss of tolerance to Pi deficiency rather specifically under acidic conditions. This result suggested important physiological roles of galactolipid-enriched membranes under acidic Pi deficiency.
Project description:Hitherto, all enveloped viruses were thought to shed their lipid membrane during entry into cells by membrane fusion. The extracellular form of Vaccinia virus has two lipid envelopes surrounding the virus core, and consequently a single fusion event will not deliver a naked core into the cell. Here we report a previously underscribed mechanism in which the outer viral membrane is disrupted by a ligand-induced nonfusogenic reaction, followed by the fusion of the inner viral membrane with the plasma membrane and penetration of the virus core into the cytoplasm. The dissolution of the outer envelope depends on interactions with cellular polyanionic molecules and requires the virus glycoproteins A34 and B5. This discovery represents a remarkable example of how viruses manipulate biological membranes, solves the topological problem of how a double-enveloped virus enters cells, reveals a new effect of polyanions on viruses, and provides a therapeutic approach for treatment of poxvirus infections, such as smallpox.
Project description:The availability of nitrogen (N) to plants has a profound impact on carbohydrate and protein metabolism, but little is known about its effect on membrane lipid species. This study examines the changes in galactolipid and phospholipid species in soybean as affected by the availability of N, either supplied to soil or obtained through Bradyrhizobium japonicum nodulation. When N was limited in soil, the content of galactolipids, monogalactosyldiacylglycerol (MGDG) and digalactosyldiacyglycerol (DGDG), decreased drastically in leaves, while a smaller decrease of DGDG was observed in roots. In both leaves and roots, the overall content of different phospholipid classes was largely unchanged by N limitation, although some individual phospholipid molecular species did display significant changes. Nodulation with Bradyrhizobium of soybean grown in N-deficient soil resulted in a large increase in levels of plastidic lipid classes, MGDG, DGDG, and phosphatidylglycerol, along with smaller increases in non-plastidic phospholipids in leaves. Nodulation also led to higher levels of phospholipids in roots without changes in root levels of MGDG and DGDG. Overall, N availability alters lipid content more in leaves than roots and more in galactolipids than phospholipids. Increased N availability leads to increased galactolipid accumulation in leaves, regardless of whether N is supplied from the soil or symbiotic fixation.
Project description:In this study, we used liquid chromatography high-resolution tandem mass spectrometry to analyze the lipidome of turtlegrass (Thalassia testudinum) leaves with either extremely high phosphorus content or extremely low phosphorus content. Most species of phospholipids were significantly down-regulated in phosphorus-deplete leaves, whereas diacylglyceryltrimethylhomoserine (DGTS), triglycerides (TG), galactolipid digalactosyldiacylglycerol (DGDG), certain species of glucuronosyldiacylglycerols (GlcADG), and certain species of sulfoquinovosyl diacylglycerol (SQDG) were significantly upregulated, accounting for the change in phosphorus content, as well as structural differences in the leaves of plants growing across regions of varying elemental availability. These data suggest that seagrasses are able to modify the phosphorus content in leaf membranes dependent upon environmental availability.
Project description:Antiviral drugs targeting viral proteins often result in prompt selection for resistance. Moreover, the number of viral targets is limited. Novel antiviral targets are therefore needed. The unique characteristics of fusion between virion envelopes and cell membranes may provide such targets. Like all fusing bilayers, viral envelopes locally adopt hourglass-shaped stalks during the initial stages of fusion, a process that requires local negative membrane curvature. Unlike cellular vesicles, however, viral envelopes do not redistribute lipids between leaflets, can only use the energy released by virion proteins, and fuse to the extracellular leaflets of cell membranes. Enrichment in phospholipids with hydrophilic heads larger than their hydrophobic tails in the convex outer leaflet of vesicles favors positive curvature, therefore increasing the activation energy barrier for fusion. Such phospholipids can increase the activation barrier beyond the energy provided by virion proteins, thereby inhibiting viral fusion. However, phospholipids are not pharmacologically useful. We show here that a family of synthetic rigid amphiphiles of shape similar to such phospholipids, RAFIs (rigid amphipathic fusion inhibitors), inhibit the infectivity of several otherwise unrelated enveloped viruses, including hepatitis C and HSV-1 and -2 (lowest apparent IC(50) 48 nM), with no cytotoxic or cytostatic effects (selectivity index > 3,000) by inhibiting the increased negative curvature required for the initial stages of fusion.