Crystallization chaperone strategies for membrane proteins
ABSTRACT From G protein-coupled receptors to ion channels, membrane proteins represent over half of known drug targets. Yet, structure-based drug discovery is hampered by the dearth of available three-dimensional models for this large category of proteins. Other than efforts to improve membrane protein expression and stability, current strategies to improve the ability of membrane proteins to crystallize involve examining many orthologs and DNA constructs, testing the effects of different detergents for purification and crystallization, creating a lipidic environment during crystallization, and cocrystallizing with covalent or non-covalent soluble protein chaperones with an intrinsic high propensity to crystallize. In this review, we focus on this last category, highlighting successes of crystallization chaperones in membrane protein structure determination and recent developments in crystal chaperone engineering, including molecular display to enhance chaperone crystallizability, and end with a novel generic approach in development to target any membrane protein of interest.
SourceAvailable from: Sibel Kalyoncu[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Protein crystallization is dependent upon, and sensitive to, the intermolecular contacts that assist in ordering proteins into a three dimensional lattice. Here we used protein engineering and mutagenesis to affect the crystallization of single chain antibody fragments (scFvs) that recognize the EE epitope (EYMPME) with high affinity. These hypercrystallizable scFvs are under development to assist difficult proteins, such as membrane proteins, in forming crystals, by acting as crystallization chaperones. Guided by analyses of intermolecular crystal lattice contacts, two second-generation anti-EE scFvs were produced, which bind to proteins with installed EE tags. Surprisingly, although non-complementarity determining region (CDR) lattice residues from the parent scFv framework remained unchanged through the processes of protein engineering and rational design, crystal lattices of the derivative scFvs differ. Comparison of energy calculations and the experimentally-determined lattice interactions for this basis set provides insight into the complexity of the forces driving crystal lattice choice and demonstrates the availability of multiple well-ordered surface features in our scFvs capable of forming versatile crystal contacts. © Proteins 2014;. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.Proteins Structure Function and Bioinformatics 02/2014; DOI:10.1002/prot.24542 · 3.34 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Heterologous expression and characterisation of the membrane proteins of higher eukaryotes is of paramount interest in fundamental and applied research. Due to the rather simple and well-established methods for their genetic modification and cultivation, yeast cells are attractive host systems for recombinant protein production. This review provides an overview on the remarkable progress, and discusses pitfalls, in applying various yeast host strains for high-level expression of eukaryotic membrane proteins. In contrast to the cell lines of higher eukaryotes, yeasts permit efficient library screening methods. Modified yeasts are used as high-throughput screening tools for heterologous membrane protein functions or as benchmark for analysing drug-target relationships, e.g., by using yeasts as sensors. Furthermore, yeasts are powerful hosts for revealing interactions stabilising and/or activating membrane proteins. We also discuss the stress responses of yeasts upon heterologous expression of membrane proteins. Through co-expression of chaperones and/or optimising yeast cultivation and expression strategies, yield-optimised hosts have been created for membrane protein crystallography or efficient whole-cell production of fine chemicals.Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 07/2014; DOI:10.1007/s00253-014-5948-4 · 3.81 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Specific, tight-binding protein partners are valuable helpers to facilitate membrane protein (MP) crystallization, because they can i) stabilize the protein, ii) reduce its conformational heterogeneity, and iii) increase the polar surface from which well-ordered crystals can grow. The design and production of a new family of synthetic scaffolds (dubbed αReps, for "artificial alpha repeat protein") have been recently described. The stabilization and immobilization of MPs in a functional state are an absolute prerequisite for the screening of binders that recognize specifically their native conformation. We present here a general procedure for the selection of αReps specific of any MP. It relies on the use of biotinylated amphipols, which act as a universal "Velcro" to stabilize, and immobilize MP targets onto streptavidin-coated solid supports, thus doing away with the need to tag the protein itself.Journal of Membrane Biology 08/2014; 247(9-10). DOI:10.1007/s00232-014-9707-3 · 2.17 Impact Factor