Cleavage of membrane proteins in the lipid bilayer by intramembrane proteases is crucial for health and disease. Although different lipid environments can potently modulate their activity, how this is linked to their structural dynamics is unclear. Here we show that the carboxy-peptidase-like activity of the archaeal intramembrane protease PSH, a homolog of the Alzheimer's disease-associated presenilin/γ-secretase is impaired in micelles and promoted in a lipid bilayer. Comparative molecular dynamics simulations revealed that important elements for substrate binding such as transmembrane domain 6a of PSH are more labile in micelles and stabilized in the lipid bilayer. Moreover, consistent with an enhanced interaction of PSH with a transition-state analog inhibitor, the bilayer promoted the formation of the enzyme´s catalytic active site geometry. Our data indicate that the lipid environment of an intramembrane protease plays a critical role in structural stabilization and active site arrangement of the enzyme-substrate complex thereby promoting intramembrane proteolysis.
For all figures the source data are provided in the respective source data files. The coordinate and trajectory files of all simulations can be accessed at Zenodo: https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.6487373
Recognition of the amyloid precursor protein by human γ-secretaseRCSB Protein Data Bank, 6IYC.
Structure of a presenilin family intramembrane aspartate proteaseRCSB Protein Data Bank, 4HYG.
- Martin Zacharias
- Harald Steiner
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- M Joanne Lemieux, University of Alberta, Canada
© 2022, Feilen 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.
Dystroglycan (DG) requires extensive post-translational processing and O-glycosylation to function as a receptor for extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins containing laminin-G-like (LG) domains. Matriglycan is an elongated polysaccharide of alternating xylose (Xyl) and glucuronic acid (GlcA) that binds with high-affinity to ECM proteins with LG-domains and is uniquely synthesized on α-dystroglycan (α-DG) by like-acetylglucosaminyltransferase-1 (LARGE1). Defects in the post-translational processing or O-glycosylation of α-DG that result in a shorter form of matriglycan reduce the size of α-DG and decrease laminin binding, leading to various forms of muscular dystrophy. Previously, we demonstrated that Protein O-Mannose Kinase (POMK) is required for LARGE1 to generate full-length matriglycan on α-DG (~150-250 kDa) (Walimbe et al., 2020). Here, we show that LARGE1 can only synthesize a short, non-elongated form of matriglycan in mouse skeletal muscle that lacks the DG N-terminus (α-DGN), resulting in a ~100-125 kDa α-DG. This smaller form of α-DG binds laminin and maintains specific force but does not prevent muscle pathophysiology, including reduced force production after eccentric contractions or abnormalities in the neuromuscular junctions. Collectively, our study demonstrates that α-DGN, like POMK, is required for LARGE1 to extend matriglycan to its full mature length on α-DG and thus prevent muscle pathophysiology.
The malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum synthesizes significant amounts of phospholipids to meet the demands of replication within red blood cells. De novo phosphatidylcholine (PC) biosynthesis via the Kennedy pathway is essential, requiring choline that is primarily sourced from host serum lysophosphatidylcholine (lysoPC). LysoPC also acts as an environmental sensor to regulate parasite sexual differentiation. Despite these critical roles for host lysoPC, the enzyme(s) involved in its breakdown to free choline for PC synthesis are unknown. Here, we show that a parasite glycerophosphodiesterase (PfGDPD) is indispensable for blood stage parasite proliferation. Exogenous choline rescues growth of PfGDPD-null parasites, directly linking PfGDPD function to choline incorporation. Genetic ablation of PfGDPD reduces choline uptake from lysoPC, resulting in depletion of several PC species in the parasite, whilst purified PfGDPD releases choline from glycerophosphocholine in vitro. Our results identify PfGDPD as a choline-releasing glycerophosphodiesterase that mediates a critical step in PC biosynthesis and parasite survival.