The Curvature Induction of Surface-Bound Antimicrobial Peptides Piscidin 1 and Piscidin 3 Varies with Lipid Chain Length.
ABSTRACT: The initial steps of membrane disruption by antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) involve binding to bacterial membranes in a surface-bound (S) orientation. To evaluate the effects of lipid composition on the S state, molecular dynamics simulations of the AMPs piscidin 1 (p1) and piscidin 3 (p3) were carried out in four different bilayers: 3:1 DMPC/DMPG, 3:1 POPC/POPG, 1:1 POPE/POPG, and 4:1 POPC/cholesterol. In all cases, the addition of 1:40 piscidin caused thinning of the bilayer, though thinning was least for DMPC/DMPG. The peptides also insert most deeply into DMPC/DMPG, spanning the region from the bilayer midplane to the headgroups, and thereby only mildly disrupting the acyl chains. In contrast, the peptides insert less deeply in the palmitoyl-oleoyl containing membranes, do not reach the midplane, and substantially disrupt the chains, i.e., the neighboring acyl chains bend under the peptide, forming a basket-like conformation. Curvature free energy derivatives calculated from the simulation pressure profiles reveal that the peptides generate positive curvature in membranes with palmitoyl and oleoyl chains but negative curvature in those with myristoyl chains. Curvature inductions predicted with a continuum elastic model follow the same trends, though the effect is weaker, and a small negative curvature induction is obtained in POPC/POPG. These results do not directly speak to the relative stability of the inserted (I) states or ease of pore formation, which requires the free energy pathway between the S and I states. Nevertheless, they do highlight the importance of lipid composition and acyl chain packing.
Project description:The effects of hydrophobic thickness and the molar phosphatidylglycerol (PG) content of lipid bilayers on the structure and membrane interaction of three cationic antimicrobial peptides were examined: aurein 2.2, aurein 2.3 (almost identical to aurein 2.2, except for a point mutation at residue 13), and a carboxy C-terminal analog of aurein 2.3. Circular dichroism results indicated that all three peptides adopt an alpha-helical structure in the presence of a 3:1 molar mixture of 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine/1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-[phospho-rac-(1-glycerol)] (DMPC/DMPG), and 1:1 and 3:1 molar mixtures of 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine/1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-[phospho-rac-(1-glycerol)] (POPC/POPG). Oriented circular dichroism data for three different lipid compositions showed that all three peptides were surface-adsorbed at low peptide concentrations, but were inserted into the membrane at higher peptide concentrations. The (31)P solid-state NMR data of the three peptides in the DMPC/DMPG and POPC/POPG bilayers showed that all three peptides significantly perturbed lipid headgroups, in a peptide or lipid composition-dependent manner. Differential scanning calorimetry results demonstrated that both amidated aurein peptides perturbed the overall phase structure of DMPC/DMPG bilayers, but perturbed the POPC/POPG chains less. The nature of the perturbation of DMPC/DMPG bilayers was most likely micellization, and for the POPC/POPG bilayers, distorted toroidal pores or localized membrane aggregate formation. Calcein release assay results showed that aurein peptide-induced membrane leakage was more severe in DMPC/DMPG liposomes than in POPC/POPG liposomes, and that aurein 2.2 induced higher calcein release than aurein 2.3 and aurein 2.3-COOH from 1:1 and 3:1 POPC/POPG liposomes. Finally, DiSC(3)5 assay data further delineated aurein 2.2 from the others by showing that it perturbed the lipid membranes of intact S. aureus C622 most efficiently, whereas aurein 2.3 had the same efficiency as gramicidin S, and aurein 2.3-COOH was the least efficient. Taken together, these data show that the membrane interactions of aurein peptides are affected by the hydrophobic thickness of the lipid bilayers and the PG content.
Project description:Magainin 2 (MAG2) and PGLa are two ?-helical antimicrobial peptides found in the skin of the African frog Xenopus laevis. They act by permeabilizing bacterial membranes and exhibit an exemplary synergism. Here, we determined the detailed molecular alignment and dynamical behavior of MAG2 in oriented lipid bilayers by using <sup>2</sup>H-NMR on Ala-d<sub>3</sub>-labeled peptides, which yielded orientation-dependent quadrupolar splittings of the labels. The amphiphilic MAG2 helix was found to lie flat on the membrane surface in 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylcholine (DMPC)/1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylglycerol (DMPG) and 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylcholine (POPC)/1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylglycerol (POPG), as expected, with a tilt angle close to 90°. This orientation fits well with all-atom molecular-dynamics simulations of MAG2 performed in DMPC and DMPC/DMPG. In the presence of an equimolar amount of PGLa, the NMR analysis showed that MAG2 becames tilted at an angle of 120°, and its azimuthal rotation angle also changes. Since this interaction was found to occur in a concentration range where the peptides per se do not interact with their own type, we propose that MAG2 forms a stable heterodimer with PGLa. Given that the PGLa molecules in the complex are known to be flipped into a fully upright orientation, with a helix tilt close to 180°, they must make up the actual transmembrane pore. We thus suggest that the two negative charges on the C-terminus of the obliquely tilted MAG2 peptides neutralize some of the cationic groups on the upright PGLa helices. This would stabilize the assembly of PGLa into a toroidal pore with an overall reduced charge density, which could explain the mechanism of synergy.
Project description:Pardaxin, with a bend-helix-bend-helix structure, is a membrane-active antimicrobial peptide that its membrane activity depends on the lipid bilayer composition. Herein, all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulations were performed to provide further molecular insight into the interactions, structural dynamics, orientation behavior, and cationic residues snorkeling of pardaxin in the DMPC, DPPC, POPC, POPG, POPG/POPE (3:1), and POPG/POPE (1:3) lipid bilayers. The results showed that the C-terminal helix of the peptide was maintained in all six types of the model-bilayers and pardaxin was tilted into the DMPC, DPPC, and POPG/POPE mixed bilayers more than the POPC and POPG bilayers. As well as, the structure of zwitterionic membranes was more affected by the peptide than the anionic bilayers. Taken together, the study demonstrated that the cationic residues of pardaxin snorkeled toward the interface of lipid bilayers and all phenylalanine residues of the peptide played important roles in the peptide-membrane interactions. We hope that this work will provide a better understanding of the interactions of antimicrobial peptides with the membranes.
Project description:The membrane-bound conformation of a cell-penetrating peptide, penetratin, is investigated using solid-state NMR spectroscopy. The (13)C chemical shifts of (13)C, (15)N-labeled residues in the peptide indicate a reversible conformational change from beta-sheet at low temperature to coil-like at high temperature. This conformational change occurs for all residues examined between positions 3 and 13, at peptide/lipid molar ratios of 1:15 and 1:30, in membranes with 25-50% anionic lipids, and in both saturated DMPC/DMPG (1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylchloline/1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylglycerol) membranes and unsaturated POPC/POPG (1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylcholine/1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylglycerol) membranes. Thus, it is an intrinsic property of penetratin. The coil state of the peptide has C-H order parameters of 0.23-0.52 for C(alpha) and C(beta) sites, indicating that the peptide backbone is unstructured. Moreover, chemical shift anisotropy lineshapes are uniaxially averaged, suggesting that the peptide backbone undergoes uniaxial rotation around the bilayer normal. These observations suggest that the dynamic state of penetratin at high temperature is a structured turn instead of an isotropic random coil. The thermodynamic parameters of this sheet-turn transition are extracted and compared to other membrane peptides reported to exhibit conformational changes. We suggest that the function of this turn conformation may be to reduce hydrophobic interactions with the lipid chains and facilitate penetratin translocation across the bilayer without causing permanent membrane damage.
Project description:Previous studies on aurein 2.2 and 2.3 in DMPC/DMPG and POPC/POPG membranes have shown that bilayer thickness and phosphatidylglycerol content have a significant impact on the interaction of these peptides with membrane bilayers. Further examination with the DiSC(3)5 assay has indicated that aurein 2.2 induces greater membrane leakage than aurein 2.3 in Staphylococcus aureus C622. The only difference between these peptides is a Leu to Ile mutation at residue 13. To better understand the importance of this residue, the structure and activity of the L13A, L13F, and L13V mutants were investigated. In addition, we investigated a number of peptides with truncations at the C-terminus to determine whether the C-terminus, which contains residue 13, is crucial for antimicrobial activity. Solution circular dichroism results demonstrated that the L13F mutation and the truncation of the C-terminus by six residues resulted in decreased helical content, whereas the L13A or L13V mutation and the truncation of the C-terminus by three residues showed little to no effect on the structure. Oriented circular dichroism results demonstrated that only an extensive C-terminal truncation reduced the ability of the peptide to insert into lipid bilayers. (31)P NMR spectroscopy showed that all peptides disorder the headgroups. The implications of these results in terms of antimicrobial activity and the ability of these peptides to induce leakage in S. aureus are discussed. The results suggest that the presence of the 13th residue in aurein 2.2 is important for structure and activity, but the exact nature of residue 13 is less important as long as it is a hydrophobic residue.
Project description:Many biophysical processes such as insertion of proteins into membranes and membrane fusion are governed by bilayer electrostatic potential. At the time of this writing, the arsenal of biophysical methods for such measurements is limited to a few techniques. Here we describe a, to our knowledge, new spin-probe electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) approach for assessing the electrostatic surface potential of lipid bilayers that is based on a recently synthesized EPR probe (IMTSL-PTE) containing a reversibly ionizable nitroxide tag attached to the lipids' polar headgroup. EPR spectra of the probe directly report on its ionization state and, therefore, on electrostatic potential through changes in nitroxide magnetic parameters and the degree of rotational averaging. Further, the lipid nature of the probe provides its full integration into lipid bilayers. Tethering the nitroxide moiety directly to the lipid polar headgroup defines the location of the measured potential with respect to the lipid bilayer interface. Electrostatic surface potentials measured by EPR of IMTSL-PTE show a remarkable (within ±2%) agreement with the Gouy-Chapman theory for anionic DMPG bilayers in fluid (48°C) phase at low electrolyte concentration (50 mM) and in gel (17°C) phase at 150-mM electrolyte concentration. This agreement begins to diminish for DMPG vesicles in gel phase (17°C) upon varying electrolyte concentration and fluid phase bilayers formed from DMPG/DMPC and POPG/POPC mixtures. Possible reasons for such deviations, as well as the proper choice of an electrostatically neutral reference interface, have been discussed. Described EPR method is expected to be fully applicable to more-complex models of cellular membranes.
Project description:Biological membranes are complex dynamic systems composed of a great variety of carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins, which together play a pivotal role in the protection of organisms and through which the interchange of different substances is regulated in the cell. Given the complexity of membranes, models mimicking them provide a convenient way to study and better understand their mechanisms of action and their interactions with biologically active compounds. Thus, in the present study, a new Schiff base (<i>Bz-Im</i>) derivative from 2-(<i>m</i>-aminophenyl)benzimidazole and 2,4-dihydroxybenzaldehyde was synthesized and characterized by spectroscopic and spectrometric techniques. Interaction studies of (<i>Bz-Im</i>) with two synthetic membrane models prepared with 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DMPC) and DMPC/1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoglycerol (DMPG) 3:1 mixture, imitating eukaryotic and prokaryotic membranes, respectively, were performed by applying differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Molecular dynamics simulations were also developed to better understand their interactions. In vitro and in silico assays provided approaches to understand the effect of <i>Bz-Im</i> on these lipid systems. The DSC results showed that, at low compound concentrations, the effects were similar in both membrane models. By increasing the concentration of <i>Bz-Im</i>, the DMPC/DMPG membrane exhibited greater fluidity as a result of the interaction with <i>Bz-Im</i>. On the other hand, molecular dynamics studies carried out on the erythrocyte membrane model using the phospholipids POPE (1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine), SM (N-(15Z-tetracosenoyl)-sphing-4-enine-1-phosphocholine), and POPC (1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine) revealed that after 30 ns of interaction, both hydrophobic interactions and hydrogen bonds were responsible for the affinity of <i>Bz-Im</i> for PE and SM. The interactions of the imine with POPG (1-Palmitoyl-2-Oleoyl-sn-Glycero-3-Phosphoglycerol) in the <i>E. coli</i> membrane model were mainly based on hydrophobic interactions.
Project description:Gramicidin A was incorporated at a peptide/lipid ratio of 1:10 mol/mol in aligned bilayers of dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine (DMPC), phosphatidylserine (DMPS), phosphatidylglycerol (DMPG), and phosphatidylethanolamine (DMPE), from trifluoroethanol. Orientations of the peptide and lipid chains were determined by polarized attenuated total reflection infrared spectroscopy. Lipid-peptide interactions with gramicidin A in DMPC bilayers were studied with different spin-labeled lipid species by using electron spin resonance spectroscopy. In DMPC membranes, the orientation of the lipid chains is comparable to that in the absence of peptide, in both gel and fluid phases. In gel-phase DMPC, the effective tilt of the peptide exceeds that of the lipid chains, but in the fluid phase both are similar. For gramicidin A in DMPS, DMPG, and DMPE, the degree of orientation of the peptide and lipid chains is less than in DMPC. In the fluid phase of DMPS, DMPG, and DMPE, gramicidin A is also less well oriented than are the lipid chains. In DMPE especially, gramicidin A is largely disordered. In DMPC membranes, three to four lipids per monomer experience direct motional restriction on interaction with gramicidin A. This is approximately half the number of lipids expected to contact the intramembranous perimeter of the gramicidin A monomer. A selectivity for certain negatively charged lipids is found in the interaction with gramicidin A in DMPC. These results are discussed in terms of the integration of gramicidin A channels in lipid bilayers, and of the interactions of lipids with integral membrane proteins.
Project description:The Proton-Coupled Folate Transporter (PCFT) is a transmembrane transport protein that controls the absorption of dietary folates in the small intestine. PCFT also mediates uptake of chemotherapeutically used antifolates into tumor cells. PCFT has been identified within lipid rafts observed in phospholipid bilayers of plasma membranes, a micro environment that is altered in tumor cells. The present study aimed at investigating the impact of different lipids within Lipid-protein nanodiscs (LPNs), discoidal lipid structures stabilized by membrane scaffold proteins, to yield soluble PCFT expression in an E. coli lysate-based cell-free transcription/translation system. In the absence of detergents or lipids, we observed PCFT quantitatively as precipitate in this system. We then explored the ability of LPNs to support solubilized PCFT expression when present during in-vitro translation. LPNs consisted of either dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine (DMPC), palmitoyl-oleoyl phosphatidylcholine (POPC), or dimyristoyl phosphatidylglycerol (DMPG). While POPC did not lead to soluble PCFT expression, both DMPG and DMPC supported PCFT translation directly into LPNs, the latter in a concentration dependent manner. The results obtained through this study provide insights into the lipid preferences of PCFT. Membrane-embedded or solubilized PCFT will enable further studies with diverse biophysical approaches to enhance the understanding of the structure and molecular mechanism of folate transport through PCFT.
Project description:To become clinically effective, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) should be non-cytotoxic to host cells. Piscidins are a group of fish-derived AMPs with potent antimicrobial and antiendotoxin activities but limited by extreme cytotoxicity. We conjectured that introduction of cationic residue(s) at the interface of polar and non-polar faces of piscidins may control their insertion into hydrophobic mammalian cell membrane and thereby reducing cytotoxicity. We have designed several novel analogs of piscidin-1 by substituting threonine residue(s) with L and D-lysine residue(s). L/D-lysine-substituted analogs showed significantly reduced cytotoxicity but exhibited either higher or comparable antibacterial activity akin to piscidin-1. Piscidin-1-analogs demonstrated higher efficacy than piscidin-1 in inhibiting lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced pro-inflammatory responses in THP-1 cells. T15,21K-piscidin-1 (0.5?mg/Kg) and T15,21dK-piscidin-1 (1.0?mg/Kg) demonstrated 100% survival of LPS (12.0?mg/Kg)-administered mice. High resolution NMR studies revealed that both piscidin-1 and T15,21K-piscidin-1 adopted helical structures, with latter showing a shorter helix, higher amphipathicity and cationic residues placed at optimal distances to form ionic/hydrogen bond with lipid A of LPS. Remarkably, T15,21dK-piscidin-1 showed a helix-loop-helix structure in LPS and its interactions with LPS could be sustained by the distance of separation of side chains of R7 and D-Lys-15 which is close to the inter-phosphate distance of lipid A.