Plants constantly renew during their life cycle and thus require to shed senescent and damaged organs. Floral abscission is controlled by the leucine-rich repeat receptor kinase (LRR-RK) HAESA and the peptide hormone IDA. It is unknown how expression of IDA in the abscission zone leads to HAESA activation. Here we show that IDA is sensed directly by the HAESA ectodomain. Crystal structures of HAESA in complex with IDA reveal a hormone binding pocket that accommodates an active dodecamer peptide. A central hydroxyproline residue anchors IDA to the receptor. The HAESA co-receptor SERK1, a positive regulator of the floral abscission pathway, allows for high-affinity sensing of the peptide hormone by binding to an Arg-His-Asn motif in IDA. This sequence pattern is conserved among diverse plant peptides, suggesting that plant peptide hormone receptors may share a common ligand binding mode and activation mechanism.
- Mingjie Zhang, Shenzhen Peking University-The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Medical Center, China
© 2016, Santiago et al.
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Genome and epigenome integrity in eukaryotes depends on the proper coupling of histone deposition with DNA synthesis. This process relies on the evolutionary conserved histone chaperone CAF-1 for which the links between structure and functions are still a puzzle. While studies of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae CAF-1 complex enabled to propose a model for the histone deposition mechanism, we still lack a framework to demonstrate its generality and in particular, how its interaction with the polymerase accessory factor PCNA is operating. Here, we reconstituted a complete SpCAF-1 from fission yeast. We characterized its dynamic structure using NMR, SAXS and molecular modeling together with in vitro and in vivo functional studies on rationally designed interaction mutants. Importantly, we identify the unfolded nature of the acidic domain which folds up when binding to histones. We also show how the long KER helix mediates DNA binding and stimulates SpCAF-1 association with PCNA. Our study highlights how the organization of CAF-1 comprising both disordered regions and folded modules enables the dynamics of multiple interactions to promote synthesis-coupled histone deposition essential for its DNA replication, heterochromatin maintenance, and genome stability functions.
Histone post-translational modifications (PTMs) play a critical role in chromatin regulation. It has been proposed that these PTMs form localized ‘codes’ that are read by specialized regions (reader domains) in chromatin-associated proteins (CAPs) to regulate downstream function. Substantial effort has been made to define [CAP: histone PTM] specificities, and thus decipher the histone code and guide epigenetic therapies. However, this has largely been done using the reductive approach of isolated reader domains and histone peptides, which cannot account for any higher-order factors. Here, we show that the [BPTF PHD finger and bromodomain: histone PTM] interaction is dependent on nucleosome context. The tandem reader selectively associates with nucleosomal H3K4me3 and H3K14ac or H3K18ac, a combinatorial engagement that despite being in cis is not predicted by peptides. This in vitro specificity of the BPTF tandem reader for PTM-defined nucleosomes is recapitulated in a cellular context. We propose that regulatable histone tail accessibility and its impact on the binding potential of reader domains necessitates we refine the ‘histone code’ concept and interrogate it at the nucleosome level.