The down regulation of sclerostin in osteocytes mediates bone formation in response to mechanical cues and parathyroid hormone (PTH). To date, the regulation of sclerostin has been attributed exclusively to the transcriptional downregulation of the Sost gene hours after stimulation. Using mouse models and rodent cell lines, we describe the rapid, minutes-scale post-translational degradation of sclerostin protein by the lysosome following mechanical load and PTH. We present a model, integrating both new and established mechanically- and hormonally-activated effectors into the regulated degradation of sclerostin by lysosomes. Using a mouse forelimb mechanical loading model, we find transient inhibition of lysosomal degradation or the upstream mechano-signaling pathway controlling sclerostin abundance impairs subsequent load-induced bone formation by preventing sclerostin degradation. We also link dysfunctional lysosomes to aberrant sclerostin regulation using human Gaucher disease iPSCs. These results reveal how bone anabolic cues post-translationally regulate sclerostin abundance in osteocytes to regulate bone formation.
All data generated or analyzed during this study are included in the manuscript and supporting files.
- Christopher W Ward
- Joseph P Stains
- Ricardo A Feldman Dr.
- Humberto C Joca
- Christopher W Ward
- Nicole R Gould
- James S Lyons
- Katrina M Williams
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: All of the animals were handled according to protocol approved by the Animal care and Use Committee at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (Protocol Numbers, 0617013 and 0520007).
- Subburaman Mohan, Loma Linda University, United States
© 2021, Gould 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.
β-Arrestins are master regulators of cellular signaling that operate by desensitizing ligand-activated G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) at the plasma membrane and promoting their subsequent endocytosis. The endocytic activity of β-arrestins is ligand dependent, triggered by GPCR binding, and increasingly recognized to have a multitude of downstream signaling and trafficking consequences that are specifically programmed by the bound GPCR. However, only one biochemical ‘mode’ for GPCR-mediated triggering of the endocytic activity is presently known – displacement of the β-arrestin C-terminus (CT) to expose clathrin-coated pit-binding determinants that are masked in the inactive state. Here, we revise this view by uncovering a second mode of GPCR-triggered endocytic activity that is independent of the β-arrestin CT and, instead, requires the cytosolic base of the β-arrestin C-lobe (CLB). We further show each of the discrete endocytic modes is triggered in a receptor-specific manner, with GPCRs that bind β-arrestin transiently (‘class A’) primarily triggering the CLB-dependent mode and GPCRs that bind more stably (‘class B’) triggering both the CT and CLB-dependent modes in combination. Moreover, we show that different modes have opposing effects on the net signaling output of receptors – with the CLB-dependent mode promoting rapid signal desensitization and the CT-dependent mode enabling prolonged signaling. Together, these results fundamentally revise understanding of how β-arrestins operate as efficient endocytic adaptors while facilitating diversity and flexibility in the control of cell signaling.
The insulin receptor (IR) and insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF1R) control metabolic homeostasis and cell growth and proliferation. The IR and IGF1R form similar disulfide bonds linked homodimers in the apo-state; however, their ligand binding properties and the structures in the active state differ substantially. It has been proposed that the disulfide-linked C-terminal segment of α-chain (αCTs) of the IR and IGF1R control the cooperativity of ligand binding and regulate the receptor activation. Nevertheless, the molecular basis for the roles of disulfide-linked αCTs in IR and IGF1R activation are still unclear. Here, we report the cryo-EM structures of full-length mouse IGF1R/IGF1 and IR/insulin complexes with modified αCTs that have increased flexibility. Unlike the Γ-shaped asymmetric IGF1R dimer with a single IGF1 bound, the IGF1R with the enhanced flexibility of αCTs can form a T-shaped symmetric dimer with two IGF1s bound. Meanwhile, the IR with non-covalently linked αCTs predominantly adopts an asymmetric conformation with four insulins bound, which is distinct from the T-shaped symmetric IR. Using cell-based experiments, we further showed that both IGF1R and IR with the modified αCTs cannot activate the downstream signaling potently. Collectively, our studies demonstrate that the certain structural rigidity of disulfide-linked αCTs is critical for optimal IR and IGF1R signaling activation.