ER membrane protein complex is required for the insertions of late-synthesized transmembrane helices of Rh1 in Drosophila photoreceptors.
ABSTRACT: Most membrane proteins are synthesized on and inserted into the membrane of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), in eukaryote. The widely conserved ER membrane protein complex (EMC) facilitates the biogenesis of a wide range of membrane proteins. In this study, we investigated the EMC function using Drosophila photoreceptor as a model system. We found that the EMC was necessary only for the biogenesis of a subset of multipass membrane proteins such as rhodopsin (Rh1), TRP, TRPL, Csat, Cni, SERCA, and Na+K+ATPase ?, but not for that of secretory or single-pass membrane proteins. Additionally, in EMC-deficient cells, Rh1 was translated to its C terminus but degraded independently from ER-associated degradation. Thus, EMC exerted its effect after translation but before or during the membrane integration of transmembrane domains (TMDs). Finally, we found that EMC was not required for the stable expression of the first three TMDs of Rh1 but was required for that of the fourth and fifth TMDs. Our results suggested that EMC is required for the ER membrane insertion of succeeding TMDs of multipass membrane proteins.
Project description:The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) supports biosynthesis of proteins with diverse transmembrane domain (TMD) lengths and hydrophobicity. Features in transmembrane domains such as charged residues in ion channels are often functionally important, but could pose a challenge during cotranslational membrane insertion and folding. Our systematic proteomic approaches in both yeast and human cells revealed that the ER membrane protein complex (EMC) binds to and promotes the biogenesis of a range of multipass transmembrane proteins, with a particular enrichment for transporters. Proximity-specific ribosome profiling demonstrates that the EMC engages clients cotranslationally and immediately following clusters of TMDs enriched for charged residues. The EMC can remain associated after completion of translation, which both protects clients from premature degradation and allows recruitment of substrate-specific and general chaperones. Thus, the EMC broadly enables the biogenesis of multipass transmembrane proteins containing destabilizing features, thereby mitigating the trade-off between function and stability.
Project description:The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) supports biosynthesis of proteins with diverse transmembrane domain (TMD) lengths and hydrophobicity. Features in transmembrane domains such as charged residues in ion channels are often functionally important, but could pose a challenge during cotranslational membrane insertion and folding. Our systematic proteomic approaches in both yeast and human cells revealed that the ER membrane protein complex (EMC) binds to and promotes the biogenesis of a range of multipass transmembrane proteins, with a particular enrichment for transporters. Proximity-specific ribosome profiling demonstrates that the EMC engages clients cotranslationally and immediately following clusters of TMDs enriched for charged residues. The EMC can remain associated after completion of translation, which both protects clients from premature proteasomal degradation and allows recruitment of substrate-specific and general chaperones. Thus, the EMC broadly enables the biogenesis of multipass transmembrane proteins containing destabilizing features, thereby mitigating the trade-off between function and stability. Overall design: Ribosome profiling of whole cell or streptavidin-purified ribosomes biotinylated by ER-localized biotin ligase in yeast This series includes re-analyzed samples from GSE61012 and GSE85686.
Project description:The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane protein complex (EMC) is a key contributor to biogenesis and membrane integration of transmembrane proteins, but our understanding of its mechanisms and the range of EMC-dependent proteins remains incomplete. Here, we carried out an unbiased mass spectrometry (MS)-based quantitative proteomic analysis comparing membrane proteins in EMC-deficient cells to wild-type (WT) cells and identified 36 EMC-dependent membrane proteins and 171 EMC-independent membrane proteins. Of these, six EMC-dependent and six EMC-independent proteins were further independently validated. We found that a common feature among EMC-dependent proteins is that they contain transmembrane domains (TMDs) with polar and/or charged residues. Mutagenesis studies demonstrate that EMC dependency can be converted in cells by removing or introducing polar and/or charged residues within TMDs. Our studies expand the list of validated EMC-dependent and EMC-independent proteins and suggest that the EMC is involved in handling TMDs with residues challenging for membrane integration.
Project description:Mammals encode ?5,000 integral membrane proteins that need to be inserted in a defined topology at the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane by mechanisms that are incompletely understood. Here, we found that efficient biogenesis of ?1-adrenergic receptor (?1AR) and other G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) requires the conserved ER membrane protein complex (EMC). Reconstitution studies of ?1AR biogenesis narrowed the EMC requirement to the co-translational insertion of the first transmembrane domain (TMD). Without EMC, a proportion of TMD1 inserted in an inverted orientation or failed altogether. Purified EMC and SRP receptor were sufficient for correctly oriented TMD1 insertion, while the Sec61 translocon was necessary for insertion of the next TMD. Enforcing TMD1 topology with an N-terminal signal peptide bypassed the EMC requirement for insertion in vitro and restored efficient biogenesis of multiple GPCRs in EMC-knockout cells. Thus, EMC inserts TMDs co-translationally and cooperates with the Sec61 translocon to ensure accurate topogenesis of many membrane proteins.
Project description:The eukaryotic endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane contains essential complexes that oversee protein biogenesis and lipid metabolism, impacting nearly all aspects of cell physiology. The ER membrane protein complex (EMC) is a newly described transmembrane domain (TMD) insertase linked with various phenotypes, but whose clients and cellular responsibilities remain incompletely understood. We report that EMC deficiency limits the cellular boundaries defining cholesterol tolerance, reflected by diminished viability with limiting or excessive extracellular cholesterol. Lipidomic and proteomic analyses revealed defective biogenesis and concomitant loss of the TMD-containing ER-resident enzymes sterol-O-acyltransferase 1 (SOAT1) and squalene synthase (SQS, also known as FDFT1), which serve strategic roles in the adaptation of cells to changes in cholesterol availability. Insertion of the weakly hydrophobic tail-anchor (TA) of SQS into the ER membrane by the EMC ensures sufficient flux through the sterol biosynthetic pathway while biogenesis of polytopic SOAT1 promoted by the EMC provides cells with the ability to store free cholesterol as inert cholesteryl esters. By facilitating insertion of TMDs that permit essential mammalian sterol-regulating enzymes to mature accurately, the EMC is an important biogenic determinant of cellular robustness to fluctuations in cholesterol availability.This article has an associated First Person interview with the first author of the paper.
Project description:Integral membrane proteins play key functional roles at organelles and the plasma membrane, necessitating their efficient and accurate biogenesis to ensure appropriate targeting and activity. The endoplasmic reticulum membrane protein complex (EMC) has recently emerged as an important eukaryotic complex for biogenesis of integral membrane proteins by promoting insertion and stability of atypical and sub-optimal transmembrane domains (TMDs). Although confirmed as a bona fide complex almost a decade ago, light is just now being shed on the mechanism and selectivity underlying the cellular responsibilities of the EMC. In this Review, we revisit the myriad of functions attributed the EMC through the lens of these new mechanistic insights, to address questions of the cellular and organismal roles the EMC has evolved to undertake.
Project description:The recently discovered endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane protein complex (EMC) has been implicated in ER-associated degradation (ERAD), lipid transport and tethering between the ER and mitochondrial outer membranes, and assembly of multipass ER-membrane proteins. The EMC has been studied in both animals and fungi but its presence outside the Opisthokont clade (animals + fungi + related protists) has not been demonstrated. Here, using homology-searching algorithms, I show that the EMC is truly an ancient and conserved protein complex, present in every major eukaryotic lineage. Very few organisms have completely lost the EMC, and most, even over 2 billion years of eukaryote evolution, have retained a majority of the complex members. I identify Sop4 and YDR056C in Saccharomyces cerevisiae as Emc7 and Emc10, respectively, subunits previously thought to be specific to animals. This study demonstrates that the EMC was present in the last eukaryote common ancestor (LECA) and is an extremely important component of eukaryotic cells even though its primary function remains elusive.
Project description:Membrane protein biogenesis in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is complex and failure-prone. The ER membrane protein complex (EMC), comprising eight conserved subunits, has emerged as a central player in this process. Yet, we have limited understanding of how EMC enables insertion and integrity of diverse clients, from tail-anchored to polytopic transmembrane proteins. Here, yeast and human EMC cryo-EM structures reveal conserved intricate assemblies and human-specific features associated with pathologies. Structure-based functional studies distinguish between two separable EMC activities, as an insertase regulating tail-anchored protein levels and a broader role in polytopic membrane protein biogenesis. These depend on mechanistically coupled yet spatially distinct regions including two lipid-accessible membrane cavities which confer client-specific regulation, and a non-insertase EMC function mediated by the EMC lumenal domain. Our studies illuminate the structural and mechanistic basis of EMC's multifunctionality and point to its role in differentially regulating the biogenesis of distinct client protein classes.
Project description:Approximately 25% of eukaryotic genes code for integral membrane proteins that are assembled at the endoplasmic reticulum. An abundant and widely conserved multi-protein complex termed EMC has been implicated in membrane protein biogenesis, but its mechanism of action is poorly understood. Here, we define the composition and architecture of human EMC using biochemical assays, crystallography of individual subunits, site-specific photocrosslinking, and cryo-EM reconstruction. Our results suggest that EMC's cytosolic domain contains a large, moderately hydrophobic vestibule that can bind a substrate's transmembrane domain (TMD). The cytosolic vestibule leads into a lumenally-sealed, lipid-exposed intramembrane groove large enough to accommodate a single substrate TMD. A gap between the cytosolic vestibule and intramembrane groove provides a potential path for substrate egress from EMC. These findings suggest how EMC facilitates energy-independent membrane insertion of TMDs, explain why only short lumenal domains are translocated by EMC, and constrain models of EMC's proposed chaperone function.
Project description:Mitochondrial membrane biogenesis and lipid metabolism require phospholipid transfer from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) to mitochondria. Transfer is thought to occur at regions of close contact of these organelles and to be nonvesicular, but the mechanism is not known. Here we used a novel genetic screen in S. cerevisiae to identify mutants with defects in lipid exchange between the ER and mitochondria. We show that a strain missing multiple components of the conserved ER membrane protein complex (EMC) has decreased phosphatidylserine (PS) transfer from the ER to mitochondria. Mitochondria from this strain have significantly reduced levels of PS and its derivative phosphatidylethanolamine (PE). Cells lacking EMC proteins and the ER-mitochondria tethering complex called ERMES (the ER-mitochondria encounter structure) are inviable, suggesting that the EMC also functions as a tether. These defects are corrected by expression of an engineered ER-mitochondrial tethering protein that artificially tethers the ER to mitochondria. EMC mutants have a significant reduction in the amount of ER tethered to mitochondria even though ERMES remained intact in these mutants, suggesting that the EMC performs an additional tethering function to ERMES. We find that all Emc proteins interact with the mitochondrial translocase of the outer membrane (TOM) complex protein Tom5 and this interaction is important for PS transfer and cell growth, suggesting that the EMC forms a tether by associating with the TOM complex. Together, our findings support that the EMC tethers ER to mitochondria, which is required for phospholipid synthesis and cell growth.