[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Since membrane proteins play an important role in a variety of life-threatening diseases, the development of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies against membrane proteins is of outstanding interest. The process of such drug development requires a set of tailor-made assays for the characterization of the antibodies and for monitoring their activity. This is challenging, because the targeted membrane proteins are often not available in a format that is compatible with a biochemical assay setup. Thus, alternatives that mimic the natural targets are needed. Here, optimal peptidic mimotopes for the ELISA-based detection of the novel therapeutic antibody IMAB362 in biological samples were developed. Initial hits were identified using phage display and optimized with the help of SAR analysis on peptide microarrays. The optimized peptides showed binding constants in the low nanomolar to picomolar range, an improvement by a factor of up to 30 compared to the initial hits. The best mimotope (apparent KD = 0.15° nM) was successfully used for the ELISA-based quantification of IMAB362 in samples from a mouse pharmacokinetic study. The described process allows the rapid discovery of mimotopes for targets which are difficult to produce or handle to be used in assays or for the purification of biological products.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Sirtuin enzymes regulate metabolism and aging processes through deacetylation of acetyl-lysines in target proteins. More than 6,800 mammalian acetylation sites are known, but few targets have been assigned to most sirtuin isoforms, hampering our understanding of sirtuin function. Here we describe a peptide microarray system displaying 6,802 human acetylation sites for the parallel characterisation of their modification by deacetylases. Deacetylation data for all seven human sirtuins obtained with this system reveal isoform-specific substrate preferences and deacetylation substrate candidates for all sirtuin isoforms, including Sirt4. We confirm malate dehydrogenase protein as a Sirt3 substrate and show that peroxiredoxin 1 and high-mobility group B1 protein are deacetylated by Sirt5 and Sirt1, respectively, at the identified sites, rendering them likely new in vivo substrates. Our microarray platform enables parallel studies on physiological acetylation sites and the deacetylation data presented provide an exciting resource for the identification of novel substrates for all human sirtuins.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Protein modification by small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) modulates the activities of numerous proteins involved in different cellular functions such as gene transcription, cell cycle, and DNA repair. Comprehensive identification of SUMOylated sites is a pre-requisite to determine how SUMOylation regulates protein function. However, mapping SUMOylated Lys residues by mass spectrometry (MS) is challenging due to the dynamic nature of this modification, the existence of three functionally distinct human SUMO paralogs, and the large SUMO chain remnant that remains attached to tryptic peptides. To overcome these problems, we created HEK293 cell lines that stably express functional SUMO paralogs with an N-terminal His6-tag and an Arg residue near the C-terminus that leave a short five amino acid SUMO remnant upon tryptic digestion. We determined the fragmentation patterns of our short SUMO remnant peptides by collisional activation and electron transfer dissociation using synthetic peptide libraries. Activation using higher energy collisional dissociation (HCD) on the LTQ-Orbitrap Elite identified SUMO paralog-specific fragment ions and neutral losses of the SUMO remnant with high mass accuracy (< 5 ppm). We exploited these features to detect SUMO modified tryptic peptides in complex cell extracts by correlating mass measurements of precursor and fragment ions using data independent acquisition method. We also generated bioinformatics tools to retrieve MS/MS spectra containing characteristic fragment ions to the identification of SUMOylated peptide by conventional Mascot database searches. In HEK293 cell extracts, this MS approach uncovered low abundance SUMOylated peptides and 37 SUMO3-modified Lys residues in target proteins, most of which were previously unknown. Interestingly, we identified mixed SUMO-ubiquitin chains with ubiquitylated SUMO proteins (K20 and K32) and SUMOylated ubiquitin (K63), suggesting a complex crosstalk between these two modifications.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Neutralizing and non-neutralizing antibodies to linear epitopes on HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins have potential to mediate antiviral effector functions that could be beneficial to vaccine-induced protection. Here, plasma IgG responses were assessed in three HIV-1 gp120 vaccine efficacy trials (RV144, Vax003, Vax004) and in HIV-1-infected individuals by using arrays of overlapping peptides spanning the entire consensus gp160 of all major genetic subtypes and circulating recombinant forms (CRFs) of the virus. In RV144, where 31.2% efficacy against HIV-1 infection was seen, dominant responses targeted the C1, V2, V3 and C5 regions of gp120. An analysis of RV144 case-control samples showed that IgG to V2 CRF01_AE significantly inversely correlated with infection risk (OR= 0.54, p=0.0042), as did the response to other V2 subtypes (OR=0.60-0.63, p=0.016-0.025). The response to V3 CRF01_AE also inversely correlated with infection risk but only in vaccine recipients who had lower levels of other antibodies, especially Env-specific plasma IgA (OR=0.49, p=0.007) and neutralizing antibodies (OR=0.5, p=0.008). Responses to C1 and C5 showed no significant correlation with infection risk. In Vax003 and Vax004, where no significant protection was seen, serum IgG responses targeted the same epitopes as in RV144 with the exception of an additional C1 reactivity in Vax003 and infrequent V2 reactivity in Vax004. In HIV-1 infected subjects, dominant responses targeted the V3 and C5 regions of gp120, as well as the immunodominant domain, heptad repeat 1 (HR-1) and membrane proximal external region (MPER) of gp41. These results highlight the presence of several dominant linear B cell epitopes on the HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins. They also generate the hypothesis that IgG to linear epitopes in the V2 and V3 regions of gp120 are part of a complex interplay of immune responses that contributed to protection in RV144.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(9):e75665. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cats are definitive hosts of Toxoplasma gondii and play an essential role in the epidemiology of this parasite. The study aims at clarifying whether cats are able to develop specific antibodies against different clonal types of T. gondii and to determine by serotyping the T. gondii clonal types prevailing in cats as intermediate hosts in Germany.
To establish a peptide-microarray serotyping test, we identified 24 suitable peptides using serological T. gondii positive (n=21) and negative cat sera (n=52). To determine the clonal type-specific antibody response of cats in Germany, 86 field sera from T. gondii seropositive naturally infected cats were tested. In addition, we analyzed the antibody response in cats experimentally infected with non-canonical T. gondii types (n=7).
Positive cat reference sera reacted predominantly with peptides harbouring amino acid sequences specific for the clonal T. gondii type the cats were infected with. When the array was applied to field sera from Germany, 98.8% (85/86) of naturally-infected cats recognized similar peptide patterns as T. gondii type II reference sera and showed the strongest reaction intensities with clonal type II-specific peptides. In addition, naturally infected cats recognized type II-specific peptides significantly more frequently than peptides of other type-specificities. Cats infected with non-canonical types showed the strongest reactivity with peptides presenting amino-acid sequences specific for both, type I and type III.
Cats are able to mount a clonal type-specific antibody response against T. gondii. Serotyping revealed for most seropositive field sera patterns resembling those observed after clonal type II-T. gondii infection. This finding is in accord with our previous results on the occurrence of T. gondii clonal types in oocysts shed by cats in Germany.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(11):e80213. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The simplicity and potential of minimally invasive testing using sera from patients makes auto-antibody based biomarkers a very promising tool for use in can-cer diagnostics. Protein microarrays have been used for the identification of such auto-antibody signatures. Because high throughput protein expression and purifi-cation is laborious, synthetic peptides might be a good alternative for microarray generation and multiplexed analyses.
In this study, we designed 1185 antigenic pep-tides, deduced from proteins expressed by 642 cDNA expression clones found to be sero-reactive in both breast tumour patients and controls. The sero-reactive proteins and the corresponding peptides were used for the production of protein and peptide microarrays. Se-rum samples from females with benign and malignant breast tumours and healthy control sera (n=16 per group) were then analysed. Correct classification of the serum samples on peptide microarrays were 78% for discrimination of ‘malignant versus healthy controls’,72% for ‘benign versus malignant’ and 94% for ‘benign versus controls’. On protein arrays, correct classification for these contrasts was 69%, 59% and 59%, respectively.
The over-representation analysis of the classi-fiers derived from class prediction showed enrichment of genes associated with ribosomes, spliceosomes, en-docytosis and the pentose phosphate pathway. Se-quence analyses of the peptides with the highest sero-reactivity demonstrated enrichment of the zinc-finger domain. Peptides’ sero-reactivities were found nega-tively correlated with hydrophobicity and positively correlated with positive charge, high inter-residue pro-tein contact energies and a secondary structure propen-sity bias. This study hints at the possibility of using in silico designed antigenic peptide microarrays as an alternative to protein microarrays for the improvement of tumour auto-antibody based diagnostics.
Journal of Molecular Biochemistry. 06/2012; 1(2):129-143.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Toxoplasma gondii infections occur worldwide in humans and animals. In immunocompromised or prenatally infected humans, T. gondii can cause severe clinical symptoms. The identification of specific epitopes on T. gondii antigens is essential for the improvement and standardization of the serological diagnosis of toxoplasmosis. We selected 20 peptides mimicking linear epitopes on GRA1, GRA2, GRA4, and MIC3 antigenic T. gondii proteins in silico using the software ABCpred. A further 18 peptides representing previously published epitopes derived from GRA1, SAG1, NTPase1, and NTPase2 antigens were added to the panel. A peptide microarray assay was established to prove the diagnostic performance of the selected peptides with human serum samples. Seropositive human serum samples (n = 184) were collected from patients presenting with acute toxoplasmosis (n = 21), latent T. gondii infection (n = 53), and inactive ocular toxoplasmosis (n = 10) and from seropositive forest workers (n = 100). To adjust the cutoff values for each peptide, sera from seronegative forest workers (n = 75) and patients (n = 65) were used. Univariate logistic regression suggested the significant diagnostic potential of eight novel and two previously published peptides. A test based on these peptides had an overall diagnostic sensitivity of 69% (100% in ocular toxoplasmosis patients, 86% in acutely infected patients, 81% in latently infected patients, and 57% in seropositive forest workers). The analysis of seronegative sera performed with these peptides revealed a diagnostic specificity of 84%. The results of our study suggest that the use of a bioinformatic approach for epitope prediction in combination with peptide microarray testing is a powerful method for the selection of T. gondii epitopes as candidate antigens for serological diagnosis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Different clonal types of Toxoplasma gondii are thought to be associated with distinct clinical manifestations of infections. Serotyping is a novel technique which may allow to determine the clonal type of T. gondii humans are infected with and to extend typing studies to larger populations which include infected but non-diseased individuals.
A peptide-microarray test for T. gondii serotyping was established with 54 previously published synthetic peptides, which mimic clonal type-specific epitopes. The test was applied to human sera (n = 174) collected from individuals with an acute T. gondii infection (n = 21), a latent T. gondii infection (n = 53) and from T. gondii-seropositive forest workers (n = 100).
The majority (n = 124; 71%) of all T. gondii seropositive human sera showed reactions against synthetic peptides with sequences specific for clonal type II (type II peptides). Type I and type III peptides were recognized by 42% (n = 73) or 16% (n = 28) of the human sera, respectively, while type II-III, type I-III or type I-II peptides were recognized by 49% (n = 85), 36% (n = 62) or 14% (n = 25) of the sera, respectively. Highest reaction intensities were observed with synthetic peptides mimicking type II-specific epitopes. A proportion of the sera (n = 22; 13%) showed no reaction with type-specific peptides. Individuals with acute toxoplasmosis reacted with a statistically significantly higher number of peptides as compared to individuals with latent T. gondii infection or seropositive forest workers.
Type II-specific reactions were overrepresented and higher in intensity in the study population, which was in accord with genotyping studies on T. gondii oocysts previously conducted in the same area. There were also individuals with type I- or type III-specific reactions. Well-characterized reference sera and further specific peptide markers are needed to establish and to perform future serotyping approaches with higher resolution.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(3):e34212. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The parvulin-type peptidyl-prolyl cis/trans isomerases (PPIases) have been shown to be involved in tumor progression and the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease and were therefore a subject of intense research. Here, we describe a role for parvulin 17 in microtubule assembly. Co-precipitation experiments and sedimentation assays demonstrated that parvulin 17 interacts with tubulin in a GTP-dependent manner and thereby promotes the formation of microtubules, as shown by transmission electron microscopy and a microtubule polymerization assay. The microtubule-assembly-promoting properties of parvulin 17 seem to depend on its PPIase activity. Thus, catalytic deficient variants of parvulin 17 were not able to promote microtubule formation. Accordingly, inhibitors of parvulin 17 activity also prevent parvulin-catalyzed tubulin polymerization. The analysis of tubulin interaction sites on parvulin using peptide microarrays revealed that tubulin interacts with the substrate binding pocket of parvulin. Additionally, β-tubulin peptide scan on microarrays demonstrates interaction of parvulin 17 with an Arg-Pro-Asp motif corresponding to proline residue 87 of β-tubulin. Confocal laser scanning microscopy points to a function of parvulin 17 in microtubule dynamics as well. Parvulin 17 is predominantly found in the cytosol and colocalizes with microtubules.
Journal of Molecular Biology 08/2011; 411(4):896-909. · 3.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Families of conserved protein domains, specialized in mediating interactions with short linear peptide motifs, are responsible for the formation of a variety of dynamic complexes in the cell. An important subclass of these motifs are characterized by a high proline content and play a pivotal role in biological processes requiring the coordinated assembly of multi-protein complexes. This is achieved via interaction of proteins containing modules such as Src Homology-3 (SH3) or WW domains and specific proline rich patterns. Here we make available via a publicly accessible database a synopsis of our current understanding of the interaction landscape of the human SH3 protein family. This is achieved by integrating an information extraction strategy with a new experimental approach. In a first approach we have used a text mining strategy to capture a large number of manuscripts reporting interactions between SH3 domains and target peptides. Relevant information was annotated in the MINT database. In a second experimental approach we have used a variant of the WISE (Whole Interactome Scanning Experiment) strategy to probe a large number of naturally occurring and chemically-synthesized peptides arrayed at high density on a glass surface. By this method we have tested 60 human SH3 domains for their ability to bind a collection of 9192 poly-proline containing peptides immobilized on a glass chip. To evaluate the quality of the resulting interaction dataset, we retested some of the interactions on a smaller scale and performed a series of pull down experiments on native proteins. Peptide chips, pull down assays, SPOT synthesis and phage display experiments have allowed us to further characterize the specificity and promiscuity of proline-rich binding domains and to map their interaction network. Both the information captured from the literature and the interactions inferred from the peptide chip experiments were collected and stored in the PepspotDB (http://mint.bio.uniroma2.it/PepspotDB/).
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dual specificity tyrosine phosphorylation-regulated kinases, DYRKs, are a family of conserved protein kinases that play key
roles in the regulation of cell differentiation, proliferation, and survival. Of the five mammalian DYRKs, DYRK4 is the least
studied family member. Here, we show that several splice variants of DYRK4 are expressed in tissue-specific patterns and that
these variants have distinct functional capacities. One of these variants contains a nuclear localization signal in its extended
N terminus that mediates its interaction with importin α3 and α5 and that is capable of targeting a heterologous protein to
the nucleus. Consequently, the nucleocytoplasmic mobility of this variant differs from that of a shorter isoform in live cell
imaging experiments. Other splicing events affect the catalytic domain, including a three-amino acid deletion within subdomain
XI that markedly reduces the enzymatic activity of DYRK4. We also show that autophosphorylation of a tyrosine residue within
the activation loop is necessary for full DYRK4 kinase activity, a defining feature of the DYRK family. Finally, by comparing
the phosphorylation of an array of 720 peptides, we show that DYRK1A, DYRK2, and DYRK4 differ in their target recognition
sequence and that preference for an arginine residue at position P −3 is a feature of DYRK1A but not of DYRK2 and DYRK4. Therefore,
we highlight the use of subcellular localization as an important regulatory mechanism for DYRK proteins, and we propose that
substrate specificity could be a source of functional diversity among DYRKs.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 02/2011; 286(7):5494-5505. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dual specificity tyrosine phosphorylation-regulated kinases, DYRKs, are a family of conserved protein kinases that play key roles in the regulation of cell differentiation, proliferation, and survival. Of the five mammalian DYRKs, DYRK4 is the least studied family member. Here, we show that several splice variants of DYRK4 are expressed in tissue-specific patterns and that these variants have distinct functional capacities. One of these variants contains a nuclear localization signal in its extended N terminus that mediates its interaction with importin α3 and α5 and that is capable of targeting a heterologous protein to the nucleus. Consequently, the nucleocytoplasmic mobility of this variant differs from that of a shorter isoform in live cell imaging experiments. Other splicing events affect the catalytic domain, including a three-amino acid deletion within subdomain XI that markedly reduces the enzymatic activity of DYRK4. We also show that autophosphorylation of a tyrosine residue within the activation loop is necessary for full DYRK4 kinase activity, a defining feature of the DYRK family. Finally, by comparing the phosphorylation of an array of 720 peptides, we show that DYRK1A, DYRK2, and DYRK4 differ in their target recognition sequence and that preference for an arginine residue at position P -3 is a feature of DYRK1A but not of DYRK2 and DYRK4. Therefore, we highlight the use of subcellular localization as an important regulatory mechanism for DYRK proteins, and we propose that substrate specificity could be a source of functional diversity among DYRKs.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 02/2011; 286(7):5494-505. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Targeted proteomics, as an efficient and sensitive technology for protein identification and quantification, is dependent on the availability of custom peptides for assay development and absolute quantification. For absolute protein quantification the peptides must be heavily labeled and quantified. Current workflows rely on peptides that are prepared by labor-intensive resin-based peptide synthesis. The result is a high price per peptide, thus prohibiting large-scale projects.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Circulating antibodies are highly selective binding reagents directed to a vast repertoire of antigens. Candidate antigens displayed as overlapping peptides on microarrays can be used to screen for recognition by serum antibodies from clinically well-defined patient populations. The methodology is robust and enables unbiased visualization of antigen-specific B-cell responses. Additionally, autoantibody signatures of diagnostic value could be detected using microarrays displaying thousands of human peptides.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Protein function is highly regulated in pathways that are responsible for complex biochemical mechanisms such as growth, metabolism, and signal transduction. One of the most important mechanisms is posttranslational modification (PTM) changing protein surfaces by phosphorylation, sulfation, acetylation, methylation, glycosylation, and sumoylation resulting in a more than 100-fold higher complexity (Geiss-Friedlander and Melchior, Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol 8, 947-956, 2007; Hunter, Mol Cell 28, 730-738, 2007). This chapter presents a very efficient way to detect potential phosphorylation sites in protein families using overlapping peptides covering the complete primary structures (peptide scans) immobilized on glass slides. Results of kinase activity fingerprinting of cell lysates using peptide microarrays displaying peptide scans through all human peptidyl-prolyl-cis/trans-isomerases are shown.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Identification of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II binding peptides is a crucial step in rational vaccine design and immune monitoring. We designed a novel MHC class II molecule-peptide microarray binding assay and evaluated 346 peptides from already identified human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) epitopes and an additional set (n = 206) of 20-mer peptides, overlapping by 15 amino acid residues, from HIV type 1B (HIV-1B) gp160 and Nef as a paradigm. Peptides were attached via the N-terminal part to a linker that covalently binds to the epoxy glass slide. The 552 peptides were printed in triplicate on a single peptide microarray chip and tested for stable formation of MHC class II molecule-peptide complexes using recombinant soluble DRB1*0101(DR1), DRB1*1501(DR2), and DRB1*0401(DR4) molecules. Cluster analysis revealed unique patterns of peptide binding to all three, two, or a single MHC class II molecule. MHC class II binding peptides reside within previously described immunogenic regions of HIV gp160 and Nef, yet we could also identify new MHC class II binding peptides from gp160 and Nef. Peptide microarray chips allow the comprehensive and simultaneous screening of a high number of candidate peptide epitopes for MHC class II binding, guided by subsequent quality data extraction and binding pattern cluster analysis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The reversible phosphorylation of serine, threonine, and tyrosine residues is one of the most important intracellular post-translational modifications regulating enzymatic activities and protein/protein interaction in eukaryotic cells. Tools for determining phosphorylation status of proteins and peptides play a prominent role in signal transduction research and proteomics. Pan-specific antibodies claimed to recognize modified amino acid residues independent on the nature of surrounding residues in peptides and proteins are widely used. We used high-content phosphopeptide microarrays and microarrays displaying acetyllysine-containing peptides for comprehensive characterization of commercially available generic anti-phosphopeptide and anti-acetyllysine antibodies. We were able to demonstrate distinct subsite specificity and cross-reactivity for such antibodies.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: High density peptide microarray technologies can be applied in experimental medicine in general and in clinical immunology in particular. Laboratory diagnostics of autoimmune diseases strongly rely on screening human sera for antibodies against known autoantigens. These assays are still difficult to standardize and quantify. Typically, the results are presented as antibody titers within an assay system. Most assays use recombinant or purified autoantigens that are difficult to obtain and require great efforts of quality control. Here we describe a method to obtain patterns of epitope signatures with peptide microarrays from patients suffering from autoimmune diseases in comparison with healthy controls. One of the final aims will be to define subsets of peptides indicative for marker autoantibodies of autoimmune diseases. Finally, informative epitopes can be used for immunopurifying epitope-specific autoantibodies. Eventually, these antibodies can be further characterized on peptide microarrays displaying mutated epitopes obtained by scanning mutagenesis. Any disease or physiological status that affect humoral immune responses such as autoantibodies in oncology or responses to infections or vaccinations can be monitored.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The human genome encodes about 25,000 genes. This number seems to be very small compared to the multitude of different protein functions in highly regulated pathways that are responsible for complex biochemical mechanisms like growth, metabolism, signal transduction and reproduction. Obviously, there are mechanisms creating additional protein diversity. The most important mechanism is post-translational modification (PTM) changing protein surfaces by phosphorylation, sulfation, acetylation, methylation and sumoylation resulting in an about 100-fold higher complexity (1, 2). This chapter presents a very efficient way to detect potential phosphorylation sites in proteins using overlapping peptide scans immobilized on glass slides. Results from 35 different human kinases using peptide microarrays displaying overlapping peptide scans through either all human cyclophilins or all human FK506-binding proteins are shown. Additionally, detection of phosphorylation sites in a proteome-wide manner is demonstrated using peptide microarrays displaying cytomegalovirus proteome in the form of more than 17,000 overlapping peptides.