Chemical Tools for Studying the Impact of cis/trans Prolyl Isomerization on Signaling: A Case Study on RNA Polymerase II Phosphatase Activity and Specificity.
ABSTRACT: Proline isomerization is ubiquitous in proteins and is important for regulating important processes such as folding, recognition, and enzymatic activity. In humans, peptidyl-prolyl isomerase cis-trans isomerase NIMA interacting 1 (Pin1) is responsible for mediating fast conversion between cis- and trans-conformations of serine/threonine-proline (S/T-P) motifs in a large number of cellular pathways, many of which are involved in normal development as well as progression of several cancers and diseases. One of the major processes that Pin1 regulates is phosphatase activity against the RNA polymerase II C-terminal domain (RNAPII CTD). However, molecular tools capable of distinguishing the effects of proline conformation on phosphatase function have been lacking. A key tool that allows us to understand isomeric specificity of proteins toward their substrates is the usage of proline mimicking isosteres that are locked to prevent cis/trans-proline conversion. These locked isosteres can be incorporated into standard peptide synthesis and then used in replacement of native substrates in various experimental techniques such as kinetic and thermodynamic assays as well as X-ray crystallography. We will describe the application of these chemical tools in detail using CTD phosphatases as an example. We will also discuss alternative methods for analyzing the effect of proline conformation such as 13C NMR and the biological implications of proline isomeric specificity of proteins. The chemical and analytical tools presented in this chapter are widely applicable and should help elucidate many questions on the role of proline isomerization in biology.
Project description:The C-terminal domain (CTD) of eukaryotic RNA polymerase II is an essential regulator for RNA polymerase II-mediated transcription. It is composed of multiple repeats of a consensus sequence Tyr(1)Ser(2)Pro(3)Thr(4)Ser(5)Pro(6)Ser(7). CTD regulation of transcription is mediated by both phosphorylation of the serines and prolyl isomerization of the two prolines. Interestingly, the phosphorylation sites are typically close to prolines, and thus the conformation of the adjacent proline could impact the specificity of the corresponding kinases and phosphatases. Experimental evidence of cross-talk between these two regulatory mechanisms has been elusive. Pin1 is a highly conserved phosphorylation-specific peptidyl-prolyl isomerase (PPIase) that recognizes the phospho-Ser/Thr (pSer/Thr)-Pro motif with CTD as one of its primary substrates in vivo. In the present study, we provide structural snapshots and kinetic evidence that support the concept of cross-talk between prolyl isomerization and phosphorylation. We determined the structures of Pin1 bound with two substrate isosteres that mimic peptides containing pSer/Thr-Pro motifs in cis or trans conformations. The results unequivocally demonstrate the utility of both cis- and trans-locked alkene isosteres as close geometric mimics of peptides bound to a protein target. Building on this result, we identified a specific case in which Pin1 differentially affects the rate of dephosphorylation catalyzed by two phosphatases (Scp1 and Ssu72) that target the same serine residue in the CTD heptad repeat but have different preferences for the isomerization state of the adjacent proline residue. These data exemplify for the first time how modulation of proline isomerization can kinetically impact signal transduction in transcription regulation.
Project description:Proline isomerization greatly impacts biological signaling but is subtle and difficult to detect in proteins. We characterize this poorly understood regulatory mechanism for RNA polymerase II carboxyl terminal domain (CTD) phosphorylation state using novel, direct, and quantitative chemical tools. We determine the proline isomeric preference of three CTD phosphatases: Ssu72 as cis-proline specific, Scp1 and Fcp1 as strongly trans-preferred. Due to this inherent characteristic, these phosphatases respond differently to enzymes that catalyze the isomerization of proline, like Ess1/Pin1. We demonstrate that this selective regulation of RNA polymerase II phosphorylation state exists within human cells, consistent with in vitro assays. These results support a model in which, instead of a global enhancement of downstream enzymatic activities, proline isomerases selectively boost the activity of a subset of CTD regulatory factors specific for cis-proline. This leads to diversified phosphorylation states of CTD in vitro and in cells. We provide the chemical tools to investigate proline isomerization and its ability to selectively enhance signaling in transcription and other biological contexts.
Project description:The phosphorylation pattern of Pol2 CTD Y1S2P3T4S5P6S7 repeats comprises an informational code coordinating transcription and RNA processing. cis-trans isomerization of CTD prolines expands the scope of the code in ways that are not well understood. Here we address this issue via analysis of fission yeast peptidyl-prolyl isomerase Pin1. A pin1? allele that does not affect growth per se is lethal in the absence of cleavage-polyadenylation factor (CPF) subunits Ppn1 and Swd22 and elicits growth defects absent CPF subunits Ctf1 and Dis2 and termination factor Rhn1. Whereas CTD S2A, T4A, and S7A mutants thrive in combination with pin1?, a Y1F mutant does not, nor do CTD mutants in which half the Pro3 or Pro6 residues are replaced by alanine. Phosphate-acquisition genes pho1, pho84 and tgp1 are repressed by upstream lncRNAs and are sensitive to changes in lncRNA 3' processing/termination. pin1? hyper-represses PHO gene expression and erases the de-repressive effect of CTD-S7A. Transcriptional profiling delineated sets of 56 and 22 protein-coding genes that are down-regulated and up-regulated in pin1? cells, respectively, 77% and 100% of which are downregulated/upregulated when the cis-proline-dependent Ssu72 CTD phosphatase is inactivated. Our results implicate Pin1 as a positive effector of 3' processing/termination that acts via Ssu72.
Project description:Pin1 is a modular enzyme that accelerates the cis-trans isomerization of phosphorylated-Ser/Thr-Pro (pS/T-P) motifs found in numerous signaling proteins regulating cell growth and neuronal survival. We have used NMR to investigate the interaction of Pin1 with three related ligands that include a pS-P substrate peptide, and two pS-P substrate analogue inhibitors locked in the cis and trans conformations. Specifically, we compared the ligand binding modes and binding-induced changes in Pin1 side-chain flexibility. The cis and trans binding modes differ, and produce different mobility in Pin1. The cis-locked inhibitor and substrate produced a loss of side-chain flexibility along an internal conduit of conserved hydrophobic residues, connecting the domain interface with the isomerase active site. The trans-locked inhibitor produces a weaker conduit response. Thus, the conduit response is stereoselective. We further show interactions between the peptidyl-prolyl isomerase and Trp-Trp (WW) domains amplify the conduit response, and alter binding properties at the remote peptidyl-prolyl isomerase active site. These results suggest that specific input conformations can gate dynamic changes that support intraprotein communication. Such gating may help control the propagation of chemical signals by Pin1, and other modular signaling proteins.
Project description:Peptidyl-prolyl isomerization is an important post-translational modification of protein because proline is the only amino acid that can stably exist as cis and trans, while other amino acids are in the trans conformation in protein backbones. This makes prolyl isomerization a unique mechanism for cells to control many cellular processes. Isomerization is a rate-limiting process that requires a peptidyl-prolyl cis/trans isomerase (PPIase) to overcome the energy barrier between cis and trans isomeric forms. Pin1, a key PPIase in the cell, recognizes a phosphorylated Ser/Thr-Pro motif to catalyze peptidyl-prolyl isomerization in proteins. The significance of the phosphorylation-dependent Pin1 activity was recently highlighted for isomerization of ATR (ataxia telangiectasia- and Rad3-related). ATR, a PIKK protein kinase, plays a crucial role in DNA damage responses (DDR) by phosphorylating hundreds of proteins. ATR can form cis or trans isomers in the cytoplasm depending on Pin1 which isomerizes cis-ATR to trans-ATR. Trans-ATR functions primarily in the nucleus. The cis-ATR, containing an exposed BH3 domain, is anti-apoptotic at mitochondria by binding to tBid, preventing activation of pro-apoptotic Bax. Given the roles of apoptosis in many human diseases, particularly cancer, we propose that cytoplasmic cis-ATR enables cells to evade apoptosis, thus addicting cancer cells to cis-ATR formation for survival. But in normal DDR, a predominance of trans-ATR in the nucleus coordinates with a minimal level of cytoplasmic cis-ATR to promote DNA repair while preventing cell death; however, cells can die when DNA repair fails. Therefore, a delicate balance/equilibrium of the levels of cis- and trans-ATR is required to ensure the cellular homeostasis. In this review, we make a case that this anti-apoptotic role of cis-ATR supports oncogenesis, while Pin1 that drives the formation of trans-ATR suppresses tumor growth. We offer a potential, novel target that can be specifically targeted in cancer cells, without killing normal cells, to significantly reduce the adverse effects usually seen in cancer treatment. We also raise important issues regarding the roles of phosphorylation-dependent Pin1 isomerization of ATR in diseases and propose areas of future studies that would shed more understanding on this important cellular mechanism.
Project description:Phosphorylation-dependent peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerization plays key roles in cell cycle progression, the pathogenesis of cancer, and age-related neurodegeneration. Most of our knowledge about the role of phosphorylation-dependent peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerization and the enzyme catalyzing this reaction, the peptidyl-prolyl isomerase (Pin1), is largely limited to proteins not present in neurons. Only a handful of examples have shown that phosphorylation-dependent peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerization, Pin1 binding, or Pin1-mediated peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerization regulate proteins present at excitatory synapses. In this work, I confirm previous findings showing that Pin1 binds postsynaptic density protein-95 (PSD-95) and identify an alternative binding site in the phosphorylated N-terminus of the PSD-95. Pin1 associates via its WW domain with phosphorylated threonine (T19) and serine (S25) in the N-terminus domain of PSD-95 and this association alters the local conformation of PSD-95. Most importantly, I show that proline-directed phosphorylation of the N-terminus domain of PSD-95 alters the local conformation of this region. Therefore, proline-directed phosphorylation of the N-terminus of PSD-95, Pin1 association, and peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerization may all play a role in excitatory synaptic function and synapse development.
Project description:The cytosolic fraction of the tumor suppressor p53 activates the apoptotic effector protein BAX to trigger apoptosis. Here we report that p53 activates BAX through a mechanism different from that associated with activation by BH3 only proteins (BIM and BID). We observed that cis-trans isomerization of proline 47 (Pro47) within p53, an inherently rare molecular event, was required for BAX activation. The prolyl isomerase Pin1 enhanced p53-dependent BAX activation by catalyzing cis-trans interconversion of p53 Pro47. Our results reveal a signaling mechanism whereby proline cis-trans isomerization in one protein triggers conformational and functional changes in a downstream signaling partner. Activation of BAX through the concerted action of cytosolic p53 and Pin1 may integrate cell stress signals to induce a direct apoptotic response.
Project description:PIN1 is a phosphorylation-directed member of the peptidyl-prolyl cis/trans isomerase (PPIase) family that facilitates conformational changes in phosphorylated targets such as c-MYC (MYC). Following signaling events that mediate phosphorylation of MYC at Serine 62, PIN1 establishes structurally distinct pools of MYC through its trans-cis and cis-trans isomerization activity at Proline 63. Through these isomerization steps, PIN1 functionally regulates MYC's stability, the molecular timing of its DNA binding and transcriptional activity, and its subnuclear localization. Recently, our group showed that Serine 62 phosphorylated MYC can associate with the inner basket of the nuclear pore (NP) in a PIN1-dependent manner. The poised euchromatin at the NP basket enables rapid cellular response to environmental signals and cell stress, and PIN1-mediated trafficking of MYC calibrates this response. In this perspective, we describe the molecular aspects of PIN1 target recognition and PIN1's function in the context of its temporal and spatial regulation of MYC.
Project description:Peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerase NIMA-interacting 1 (Pin1) is an evolutionally conserved and unique enzyme that specifically catalyzes the cis-trans isomerization of phosphorylated serine/threonine-proline (pSer/Thr-Pro) motif and, subsequently, induces the conformational change of its substrates. Mounting evidence has demonstrated that Pin1 is widely overexpressed and/or overactivated in cancer, exerting a critical influence on tumor initiation and progression via regulation of the biological activity, protein degradation, or nucleus-cytoplasmic distribution of its substrates. Moreover, Pin1 participates in the cancer hallmarks through activating some oncogenes and growth enhancers, or inactivating some tumor suppressors and growth inhibitors, suggesting that Pin1 could be an attractive target for cancer therapy. In this review, we summarize the findings on the dysregulation, mechanisms, and biological functions of Pin1 in cancer cells, and also discuss the significance and potential applications of Pin1 dysregulation in human cancer.
Project description:Pin1 belongs to the family of the peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerase (PPIase), which is a class of enzymes that catalyze the cis/trans isomerization of the Proline residue. Pin1 is unique and only catalyzes the phosphorylated Serine/Threonine-Proline (S/T-P) motifs of a subset of proteins. Since the discovery of Pin1 as a key protein in cell cycle regulation, it has been implicated in numerous diseases, ranging from cancer to neurodegenerative diseases. The main features of Pin1 lies in its two main domains: the WW (two conserved tryptophan) domain and the PPIase domain. Despite extensive studies trying to understand the mechanisms of Pin1 functions, how these two domains contribute to the biological roles of Pin1 in cellular signaling requires more investigations. The WW domain of Pin1 is known to have a higher affinity to its substrate than that of the PPIase domain. Yet, the WW domain seems to prefer the trans configuration of phosphorylated S/T-P motif, while the PPIase catalyzes the cis to trans isomerasion. Such contradicting information has generated much confusion as to the actual mechanism of Pin1 function. In addition, dynamic allostery has been suggested to be important for Pin1 function. Henceforth, in this review, we will be looking at the progress made in understanding the function of Pin1, and how these understandings can aid us in overcoming the diseases implicated by Pin1 such as cancer during drug development.