Changes in Apaf-1 Conformation That Drive Apoptosome Assembly

Department of Physiology and Biophysics, Boston University School of Medicine , 700 Albany Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02118, United States.
Biochemistry (Impact Factor: 3.02). 03/2013; 52(13). DOI: 10.1021/bi301721g
Source: PubMed


Apoptosome assembly is highly regulated in the intrinsic cell death pathway. To better understand this step, we created an improved model of the human apoptosome using a crystal structure of full length Apaf-1 and a single particle, electron density map at ∼9.5 Å resolution. The apoptosome model includes N-terminal domains of Apaf-1, cognate β-propellers, and cytochrome c. A direct comparison of Apaf-1 in the apoptosome and as a monomer reveals conformational changes that occur during the first two steps of assembly. This includes an induced-fit mechanism for cytochrome c binding to regulatory β-propellers, which is dependent on shape and charge complementarity, and a large rotation of the nucleotide binding module during nucleotide exchange. These linked conformational changes create an extended Apaf-1 monomer and drive apoptosome assembly. Moreover, the N-terminal CARD in the inactive Apaf-1 monomer is not shielded from other proteins by β-propellers. Hence, the Apaf-1 CARD may be free to interact with a procaspase-9 CARD either before or during apoptosome assembly. Irrespective of the timing, the end product of assembly is a holo-apoptosome with an acentric CARD-CARD disk and tethered pc-9 catalytic domains. Subsequent activation of pc-9 leads to a proteolytic cascade and cell death.

18 Reads
  • Source
    • "WD repeats in Apaf-1 are involved in interaction with cytochrome c. Apaf-1 consists of three main functional domains: an Nterminal caspase-recruitment domain (CARD), a nucleotide-binding and oligomerization domain (NOD) and two WD40-repeats at the C-terminal of the protein (Riedl and Salvesen, 2007; Yuan et al., 2013). Caspase-recruitment domain enables Apaf-1 to be assembled with procaspase-9 and forms activated complex. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In this study, we used spilt luciferase complementation assay strategy in order to further elucidate the main role of WD-40 repeats of Apaf-1 molecules in apoptosome formation. In the presence of ATP and cytochrome c, Apaf-1 monomers oligomerize and provide a platform for activation of procaspase-9 and subsequently procaspase-3/7. For a detailed biochemical and structural investigation of Apaf-1 function and apoptosome formation, several studies have been made in recent years. However, many questions related to in vivo evaluation of this phenomenon have been persisting to answer. Some of the most important of these questions are related to WD-40 repeats at the carboxy terminus of Apaf-1 and its function in apoptosome complex formation and caspase activation. When truncated Apaf-1 molecules conjugated with luciferase fragments place in close proximity, light signal emits and real time evaluation of protein-protein interactions becomes possible. Here, we observed, for the first time, the autoassembly of truncated Apaf-1 molecules disappeared after several hours without any caspase-3/7 activation. However, we observed that, truncated Apaf-1 molecules can activate caspase-3/7 upon the induction of apoptosis via doxorubicin. Moreover, oscillation in luciferase activity upon complementation was revealed which implicates the dynamism of apoptosome formation. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.
    European journal of pharmacology 04/2015; 760. DOI:10.1016/j.ejphar.2015.04.008 · 2.53 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Cellular FLICE (FADD-like IL-1β-converting enzyme)-inhibitory protein (c-FLIP) is a major antiapoptotic protein and an important cytokine and chemotherapy resistance factor that suppresses cytokine- and chemotherapy-induced apoptosis. c-FLIP is expressed as long (c-FLIPL), short (c-FLIPS), and c-FLIPR splice variants in human cells. c-FLIP binds to FADD and/or caspase-8 or -10 and TRAIL receptor 5 (DR5). This interaction in turn prevents Death-Inducing Signaling Complex (DISC) formation and subsequent activation of the caspase cascade. c-FLIPL and c-FLIPS are also known to have multifunctional roles in various signaling pathways, as well as activating and/or upregulating several cytoprotective and pro-survival signaling proteins including Akt, ERK, and NF-κB. In addition to its role in apoptosis, c-FLIP is involved in programmed necroptosis (necrosis) and autophagy. Necroptosis is regulated by the Ripoptosome, which is a signaling intracellular cell death platform complex. The Ripoptosome contains receptor-interacting protein-1/Receptor-Interacting Protein-3 (RIP1), caspase-8, caspase-10, FADD, and c-FLIP isoforms involved in switching apoptotic and necroptotic cell death. c-FLIP regulates the Ripoptosome; in addition to its role in apoptosis, it is therefore also involved in necrosis. c-FLIPL attenuates autophagy by direct acting on the autophagy machinery by competing with Atg3 binding to LC3, thereby decreasing LC3 processing and inhibiting autophagosome formation. Upregulation of c-FLIP has been found in various tumor types, and its silencing has been shown to restore apoptosis triggered by cytokines and various chemotherapeutic agents. Hence, c-FLIP is an important target for cancer therapy. This review focuses on (1) the anti-apoptotic role of c-FLIP splice variants in preventing apoptosis and inducing cytokine and chemotherapy drug resistance, as well as its roles in necrosis and autophagy, and (2) modulation of c-FLIP expression as a means to enhance apoptosis and modulate necrosis and autophagy in cancer cells.
    01/2013; Suppl 6. DOI:10.4172/2157-2518.S6-003
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Apaf-1-like molecules assemble into a ring-like platform known as the apoptosome. This cell death platform then activates procaspases in the intrinsic cell death pathway. In this review, crystal structures of Apaf-1 monomers and CED-4 dimers have been combined with apoptosome structures to provide insights into the assembly of cell death platforms in humans, nematodes, and flies. In humans, the caspase recognition domains (CARDs) of procaspase-9 and Apaf-1 interact with each other to form a CARD-CARD disk, which interacts with the platform to create an asymmetric proteolysis machine. The disk tethers multiple pc-9 catalytic domains to the platform to raise their local concentration, and this leads to zymogen activation. These findings have now set the stage for further studies of this critical activation process on the apoptosome.
    Structure 04/2013; 21(4):501-15. DOI:10.1016/j.str.2013.02.024 · 5.62 Impact Factor
Show more

Similar Publications