Ferritins are ubiquitous proteins that oxidise and store iron within a protein shell to protect cells from oxidative damage. We have characterized the structure and function of a new member of the ferritin superfamily that is sequestered within an encapsulin capsid. We show that this encapsulated ferritin (EncFtn) has two main alpha helices, which assemble in a metal dependent manner to form a ferroxidase center at a dimer interface. EncFtn adopts an open decameric structure that is topologically distinct from other ferritins. While EncFtn acts as a ferroxidase, it cannot mineralize iron. Conversely, the encapsulin shell associates with iron, but is not enzymatically active, and we demonstrate that EncFtn must be housed within the encapsulin for iron storage. This encapsulin nanocompartment is widely distributed in bacteria and archaea and represents a distinct class of iron storage system, where the oxidation and mineralization of iron are distributed between two proteins.
Native MS Analysis of Encapsulated Ferritin from Rhodospirillum rubrumAvailable at Edinburgh DataShare.
Single crystal X-ray diffraction data for Rhodospirillum rubrum encapsulated ferritin Rru_A0973, short His-tagged variantAvailable at Edinburgh DataShare.
Single crystal X-ray diffraction data for Rhodospirillum rubrum encapsulated ferritin Rru_A0973, short His-tagged variant E32A mutantAvailable at Edinburgh DataShare.
Single crystal X-ray diffraction data for Rhodospirillum rubrum encapsulated ferritin Rru_A0973, short His-tagged variant E62A mutantAvailable at Edinburgh DataShare.
Single crystal X-ray diffraction data for Rhodospirillum rubrum encapsulated ferritin Rru_A0973, short His-tagged variant H65A mutantAvailable at Edinburgh DataShare.
- Jon Marles-Wright
- Didi He
- David J Clarke
- Jon Marles-Wright
- Emma Tarrant
- Kevin J Waldron
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- Richard Losick, Harvard University, United States
© 2016, He et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Kinase inhibitors are successful therapeutics in the treatment of cancers and autoimmune diseases and are useful tools in biomedical research. However, the high sequence and structural conservation of the catalytic kinase domain complicates the development of selective kinase inhibitors. Inhibition of off-target kinases makes it difficult to study the mechanism of inhibitors in biological systems. Current efforts focus on the development of inhibitors with improved selectivity. Here, we present an alternative solution to this problem by combining inhibitors with divergent off-target effects. We develop a multicompound-multitarget scoring (MMS) method that combines inhibitors to maximize target inhibition and to minimize off-target inhibition. Additionally, this framework enables optimization of inhibitor combinations for multiple on-targets. Using MMS with published kinase inhibitor datasets we determine potent inhibitor combinations for target kinases with better selectivity than the most selective single inhibitor and validate the predicted effect and selectivity of inhibitor combinations using in vitro and in cellulo techniques. MMS greatly enhances selectivity in rational multitargeting applications. The MMS framework is generalizable to other non-kinase biological targets where compound selectivity is a challenge and diverse compound libraries are available.
An imbalance of the gut microbiota, termed dysbiosis, has a substantial impact on host physiology. However, the mechanism by which host deals with gut dysbiosis to maintain fitness remains largely unknown. In Caenorhabditis elegans, Escherichia coli, which is its bacterial diet, proliferates in its intestinal lumen during aging. Here, we demonstrate that progressive intestinal proliferation of E. coli activates the transcription factor DAF-16, which is required for maintenance of longevity and organismal fitness in worms with age. DAF-16 up-regulates two lysozymes lys-7 and lys-8, thus limiting the bacterial accumulation in the gut of worms during aging. During dysbiosis, the levels of indole produced by E. coli are increased in worms. Indole is involved in the activation of DAF-16 by TRPA-1 in neurons of worms. Our finding demonstrates that indole functions as a microbial signal of gut dysbiosis to promote fitness of the host.