Chromosomal passenger complex hydrodynamics suggests chaperoning of the inactive state by nucleoplasmin/nucleophosmin.
ABSTRACT: The chromosomal passenger complex (CPC) is a conserved, essential regulator of cell division. As such, significant anti-cancer drug development efforts have been focused on targeting it, most notably by inhibiting its AURKB kinase subunit. The CPC is activated by AURKB-catalyzed autophosphorylation on multiple subunits, but how this regulates CPC interactions with other mitotic proteins remains unclear. We investigated the hydrodynamic behavior of the CPC in Xenopus laevis egg cytosol using sucrose gradient sedimentation and in HeLa cells using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy. We found that autophosphorylation of the CPC decreases its sedimentation coefficient in egg cytosol and increases its diffusion coefficient in live cells, indicating a decrease in mass. Using immunoprecipitation coupled with mass spectrometry and immunoblots, we discovered that inactive, unphosphorylated CPC interacts with nucleophosmin/nucleoplasmin proteins, which are known to oligomerize into pentamers and decamers. Autophosphorylation of the CPC causes it to dissociate from nucleophosmin/nucleoplasmin. We propose that nucleophosmin/nucleoplasmin complexes serve as chaperones that negatively regulate the CPC and/or stabilize its inactive form, preventing CPC autophosphorylation and recruitment to chromatin and microtubules in mitosis.
Project description:Although chromatin condensation is one of the hallmarks of apoptosis, its relationship with DNA fragmentation has been controversial. We show here that apoptotic chromatin condensation is regulated by nucleoplasmin, a protein that decondenses sperm chromatin during male pronuclear assembly. In Xenopus egg extracts, nucleoplasmin is tyrosine-dephosphorylated during apoptosis. This dephosphorylation inactivates the chromatin decondensation activity of nucleoplasmin and leads to its exclusion from the chromatin. Inhibition of tyrosine dephosphorylation prevents apoptotic chromatin condensation but not DNA fragmentation. Studies with mutant proteins indicate that dephosphorylation of nucleoplasmin at Tyr-124 regulates chromatin condensation through changes in the interaction of nucleoplasmin with chromatin and the loss of its chromatin decondensation activity. These results show that chromatin condensation and DNA fragmentation are independent processes.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Studies suggest that the related proteins nucleoplasmin and nucleophosmin (also called B23, NO38 or numatrin) are nuclear chaperones that mediate the assembly of nucleosomes and ribosomes, respectively, and that these activities are accomplished through the binding of basic proteins via their acidic domains. Recently discovered and less well characterized members of this family of acidic phosphoproteins include mouse nucleophosmin/nucleoplasmin 3 (Npm3) and Xenopus NO29. Here we report the cloning and initial characterization of the human ortholog of Npm3. RESULTS:Human genomic and cDNA clones of NPM3 were isolated and sequenced. NPM3 lies 5.5 kb upstream of FGF8 and thus maps to chromosome 10q24-26. In addition to amino acid similarities, NPM3 shares many physical characteristics with the nucleophosmin/nucleoplasmin family, including an acidic domain, multiple potential phosphorylation sites and a putative nuclear localization signal. Comparative analyses of 14 members of this family from various metazoans suggest that Xenopus NO29 is a candidate ortholog of human and mouse NPM3, and they further group both proteins closer with the nucleoplasmins than with the nucleophosmins. Northern blot analysis revealed that NPM3 was strongly expressed in all 16 human tissues examined, with especially robust expression in pancreas and testis; lung displayed the lowest level of expression. An analysis of subcellular fractions of NIH3T3 cells expressing epitope-tagged NPM3 revealed that NPM3 protein was localized solely in the nucleus. CONCLUSIONS:Human NPM3 is an abundant and widely expressed protein with primarily nuclear localization. These biological activities, together with its physical relationship to the chaparones nucleoplasmin and nucleophosmin, are consistent with the proposed function of NPM3 as a molecular chaperone functioning in the nucleus.
Project description:The evolutionarily conserved nucleoplasmin family of histone chaperones has two paralogues in Drosophila, named Nucleoplasmin-Like Protein (NLP) and Nucleophosmin (NPH). NLP localizes to the centromere, yet molecular underpinnings of this localization are unknown. Moreover, similar to homologues in other organisms, NLP forms a pentamer in vitro, but the biological significance of its oligomerization has not been explored. Here, we characterize the oligomers formed by NLP and NPH in vivo and find that oligomerization of NLP is required for its localization at the centromere. We can further show that oligomerization-deficient NLP is unable to bind the centromeric protein Hybrid Male Rescue (HMR), which in turn is required for targeting the NLP oligomer to the centromere. Finally, using super-resolution microscopy we find that NLP and HMR largely co-localize in domains that are immediately adjacent to, yet distinct from centromere domains defined by the centromeric histone dCENP-A.
Project description:Histone proteins carry information contained in post-translational modifications. Eukaryotic cells utilize this histone code to regulate the usage of the underlying DNA. In the maturing oocytes and eggs of the frog Xenopus laevis, histones are synthesized in bulk in preparation for deposition during the rapid early developmental cell cycles. During this key developmental time frame, embryonic pluripotent chromatin is established. In the egg, non-chromatin-bound histones are complexed with storage chaperone proteins, including nucleoplasmin. Here we describe the identification and characterization of a complex of the protein arginine methyltransferase 5 (Prmt5) and the methylosome protein 50 (Mep50) isolated from Xenopus eggs that specifically methylates predeposition histones H2A/H2A.X-F and H4 and the histone chaperone nucleoplasmin on a conserved motif (GRGXK). We demonstrate that nucleoplasmin (Npm), an exceedingly abundant maternally deposited protein, is a potent substrate for Prmt5-Mep50 and is monomethylated and symmetrically dimethylated at Arg-187. Furthermore, Npm modulates Prmt5-Mep50 activity directed toward histones, consistent with a regulatory role for Npm in vivo. We show that H2A and nucleoplasmin methylation appears late in oogenesis and is most abundant in the laid egg. We hypothesize that these very abundant arginine methylations are constrained to pre-mid blastula transition events in the embryo and therefore may be involved in the global transcriptional repression found in this developmental time frame.
Project description:Inner centromere protein (INCENP) is a part of a protein complex known as the chromosomal passenger complex (CPC) that is essential for correcting non-bipolar chromosome attachments and for cytokinesis. We here demonstrate that a protein arginine methyltransferase PRMT1, which are overexpressed in various types of cancer including lung and bladder cancer, methylates arginine 887 in an Aurora Kinase B (AURKB)-binding region of INCENP both in vitro and in vivo. R887-substituted INCENP revealed lower binding-affinity to AURKB than wild-type INCENP in the presence of PRMT1. Knockdown of PRMT1 as well as overexpression of methylation-inactive INCENP attenuated the AURKB activity in cancer cells, and resulted in abnormal chromosomal alignment and segregation. Furthermore, introduction of methylation-inactive INCENP into cancer cells reduced the growth rate, compared with those introduced wild-type INCENP or Mock. Our data unveils a novel mechanism of PRMT1-mediated CPC regulation through methylation of INCENP.
Project description:Nucleoplasmins are a nuclear chaperone family defined by the presence of a highly conserved N-terminal core domain. X-ray crystallographic studies of isolated nucleoplasmin core domains revealed a β-propeller structure consisting of a set of five monomers that together form a stable pentamer. Recent studies on isolated N-terminal domains from Drosophila 39-kDa FK506-binding protein (FKBP39) and from other chromatin-associated proteins showed analogous, nucleoplasmin-like (NPL) pentameric structures. Here, we report that the NPL domain of the full-length FKBP39 does not form pentameric complexes. Multi-angle light scattering (MALS) and sedimentation equilibrium ultracentrifugation (SE AUC) analyses of the molecular mass of the full-length protein indicated that FKBP39 forms homotetrameric complexes. Molecular models reconstructed from small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) revealed that the NPL domain forms a stable, tetrameric core and that FK506-binding domains are linked to it by intrinsically disordered, flexible chains that form tentacle-like segments. Analyses of full-length FKBP39 and its isolated NPL domain suggested that the distal regions of the polypeptide chain influence and determine the quaternary conformation of the nucleoplasmin-like protein. These results provide new insights regarding the conserved structure of nucleoplasmin core domains and provide a potential explanation for the importance of the tetrameric structural organization of full-length nucleoplasmins.
Project description:Nucleoplasmin (Npm) is an abundant histone chaperone in vertebrate oocytes and embryos. During embryogenesis, regulation of Npm histone binding is critical for its function in storing and releasing maternal histones to establish and maintain the zygotic epigenome. Here, we demonstrate that Xenopus laevis Npm post-translational modifications (PTMs) specific to the oocyte and egg promote either histone deposition or sequestration, respectively. Mass spectrometry and Npm phosphomimetic mutations used in chromatin assembly assays identified hyperphosphorylation on the N-terminal tail as a critical regulator for sequestration. C-terminal tail phosphorylation and PRMT5-catalyzed arginine methylation enhance nucleosome assembly by promoting histone interaction with the second acidic tract of Npm. Electron microscopy reconstructions of Npm and TTLL4 activity toward the C-terminal tail demonstrate that oocyte- and egg-specific PTMs cause Npm conformational changes. Our results reveal that PTMs regulate Npm chaperoning activity by modulating Npm conformation and Npm-histone interaction, leading to histone sequestration in the egg.
Project description:The large length scale of Xenopus laevis eggs facilitates observation of bulk cytoplasm dynamics far from the cortex during cytokinesis. The first furrow ingresses through the egg midplane, which is demarcated by chromosomal passenger complex (CPC) localized on microtubule bundles at the boundary between asters. Using an extract system, we found that local kinase activity of the Aurora B kinase (AURKB) subunit of the CPC caused disassembly of F-actin and keratin between asters and local softening of the cytoplasm as assayed by flow patterns. Beads coated with active CPC mimicked aster boundaries and caused AURKB-dependent disassembly of F-actin and keratin that propagated ?40 ?m without microtubules and much farther with microtubules present. Consistent with extract observations, we observed disassembly of the keratin network between asters in zygotes fixed before and during 1st cytokinesis. We propose that active CPC at aster boundaries locally reduces cytoplasmic stiffness by disassembling actin and keratin networks. Possible functions of this local disassembly include helping sister centrosomes move apart after mitosis, preparing a soft path for furrow ingression, and releasing G-actin from internal networks to build cortical networks that support furrow ingression.
Project description:The nucleophosmin (NPM)/nucleoplasmin family of nuclear chaperones has three members: NPM1, NPM2, and NPM3. Nuclear chaperones serve to ensure proper assembly of nucleosomes and proper formation of higher order structures of chromatin. In fact, this family of proteins has such diverse functions in cellular processes such as chromatin remodeling, ribosome biogenesis, genome stability, centrosome replication, cell cycle, transcriptional regulation, apoptosis, and tumor suppression. Of the members of this family, NPM1 is the most studied and is the main focus of this review. NPM2 and NPM3 are less well characterized, and are also discussed wherever appropriate. The structure–function relationship of NPM proteins has largely been worked out. Other than the many processes in which NPM1 takes part, the major interest comes from its involvement in human cancers, particularly acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Its significance stems from the fact that AML with mutated NPM1 accounts for ?30% of all AML cases and usually has good prognosis. Its clinical importance also comes from its involvement in virus replication, particularly in the era of outbreaks of infectious diseases.
Project description:Aurora B kinase (AURKB) is the catalytic subunit of the chromosomal passenger complex (CPC), an essential regulator of chromosome segregation. In mitosis, the CPC is required to regulate kinetochore microtubule (K-MT) attachments, the spindle assembly checkpoint, and cytokinesis. Germ cells express an AURKB homolog, AURKC, which can also function in the CPC. Separation of AURKB and AURKC function during meiosis in oocytes by conventional approaches has not been successful. Therefore, the meiotic function of AURKC is still not fully understood. Here, we describe an ATP-binding-pocket-AURKC mutant, that when expressed in mouse oocytes specifically perturbs AURKC-CPC and not AURKB-CPC function. Using this mutant we show for the first time that AURKC has functions that do not overlap with AURKB. These functions include regulating localized CPC activity and regulating chromosome alignment and K-MT attachments at metaphase of meiosis I (Met I). We find that AURKC-CPC is not the sole CPC complex that regulates the spindle assembly checkpoint in meiosis, and as a result most AURKC-perturbed oocytes arrest at Met I. A small subset of oocytes do proceed through cytokinesis normally, suggesting that AURKC-CPC is not the sole CPC complex during telophase I. But, the resulting eggs are aneuploid, indicating that AURKC is a critical regulator of meiotic chromosome segregation in female gametes. Taken together, these data suggest that mammalian oocytes contain AURKC to efficiently execute meiosis I and ensure high-quality eggs necessary for sexual reproduction.