Site-specific protein double labeling by expressed protein ligation: applications to repeat proteins.
ABSTRACT In the last few years, the use of labeled proteins has significantly expanded in the life sciences. Now, labeled proteins are indispensable tools for a wide spectrum of biophysical and chemical biology applications. In particular, the quest for more sophisticated experimental setups requires the development of new synthetic methodology, especially for multiple site-specific labeling. In this paper, we describe a synthetic strategy based on expressed protein ligation to prepare proteins in high purity and homogeneity, in which two different molecular probes are incorporated specifically at any desired position. Proteins are sequentially labeled in solution, with the advantage that a large excess of probes is not required and the labeled fragments are not restricted to peptide synthesis length limitations. This strategy was applied to selectively label a repeat protein with a fluorophores pair in different positions along the protein sequence. The doubly labeled proteins were prepared at high purity and homogeneity, as required for single molecule FRET studies. Remarkably, this approach can be adapted to the introduction of more than two molecular probes.
Article: Orthogonal site-specific protein modification by engineering reversible thiol protection mechanisms.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Covalent modification is an important strategy for introducing new functions into proteins. As engineered proteins become more sophisticated, it is often desirable to introduce multiple, modifications involving several different functionalities in a site-specific manner. Such orthogonal labeling schemes require independent labeling of differentially reactive nucleophilic amino acid side chains. We have developed two protein-mediated protection schemes that permit independent labeling of multiple thiols. These schemes exploit metal coordination or disulfide bond formation to reversibly protect cysteines in a Cys(2)His(2) zinc finger domain. We constructed a variety of N- and C-terminal fusions of these domains with maltose-binding protein, which were labeled with two or three different fluorophores. Multiple modifications were made by reacting an unprotected cysteine in MBP first, deprotecting the zinc finger, and then reacting the zinc finger cysteines. The fusion proteins were orthogonally labeled with two different fluorophores, which exhibited intramolecular fluorescene resonance energy transfer (FRET). These conjugates showed up to a threefold ratiometric change in emission intensities in response to maltose binding. We also demonstrated that the metal- and redox-mediated protection methods can be combined to produce triple independent modifications, and prepared a protein labeled with three different fluorophores that exhibited a FRET relay. Finally, labeled glucose-binding protein was covalently patterned on glass slides using thiol-mediated immobilization chemistries. Together, these experiments demonstrated that reversible thiol protection schemes provide a rapid, straightforward method for producing multiple, site-specific modifications.Protein Science 02/2005; 14(1):64-73. · 2.80 Impact Factor