[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mechanisms by which RNA-binding proteins control the translation of subsets of mRNAs are not yet clear. Slf1p and Sro9p are atypical-La motif containing proteins which are members of a superfamily of RNA-binding proteins conserved in eukaryotes. RIP-Seq analysis of these two yeast proteins identified overlapping and distinct sets of mRNA targets, including highly translated mRNAs such as those encoding ribosomal proteins. In paralell, transcriptome analysis of slf1Δ and sro9Δ mutant strains indicated altered gene expression in similar functional classes of mRNAs following loss of each factor. The loss of SLF1 had a greater impact on the transcriptome, and in particular, revealed changes in genes involved in the oxidative stress response. slf1Δ cells are more sensitive to oxidants and RIP-Seq analysis of oxidatively stressed cells enriched Slf1p targets encoding antioxidants and other proteins required for oxidant tolerance. To quantify these effects at the protein level, we used label-free mass spectrometry to compare the proteomes of wild-type and slf1Δ strains following oxidative stress. This analysis identified several proteins which are normally induced in response to hydrogen peroxide, but where this increase is attenuated in the slf1Δ mutant. Importantly, a significant number of the mRNAs encoding these targets were also identified as Slf1p-mRNA targets. We show that Slf1p remains associated with the few translating ribosomes following hydrogen peroxide stress and that Slf1p co-immunoprecipitates ribosomes and members of the eIF4E/eIF4G/Pab1p 'closed loop' complex suggesting that Slf1p interacts with actively translated mRNAs following stress. Finally, mutational analysis of SLF1 revealed a novel ribosome interacting domain in Slf1p, independent of its RNA binding La-motif. Together, our results indicate that Slf1p mediates a translational response to oxidative stress via mRNA-specific translational control.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The relocalization of translationally repressed mRNAs to mRNA Processing bodies (P-bodies) is a key consequence of cellular stress across many systems. P-bodies harbor mRNA degradation components and are implicated in mRNA decay, but the relative timing and control of mRNA relocalization to P-bodies is poorly understood. We used the MS2-GFP system to follow the movement of specific endogenous mRNAs in live yeast cells after nutritional stress. It appears that the relocalization of mRNA to P-bodies after stress is bi-phasic: some mRNAs are present early, whereas others are recruited much later concomitant with recruitment of translation initiation factors, such as eIF4E. We also find that Bfr1p is a late phase localizing P-body protein that is important for the delayed entry of the specific tested mRNAs to P-bodies. Therefore, for the mRNAs tested, relocalization to P-bodies varies both in terms of the kinetics and factor requirements. This work highlights a potential new regulatory juncture in gene expression that would facilitate the overall rationalization of protein content required for adaptation to stress.
Journal of Cell Science 01/2014; · 5.33 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In response to stress, the translation of many mRNAs in yeast can change in a fashion discordant with the general repression of translation. Here, we use machine learning to mine the properties of these mRNAs to determine specific translation control signals. We find a strong association between transcripts acutely translationally repressed under oxidative stress and those associated with the RNA-binding protein Puf3p, a known regulator of cellular mRNAs encoding proteins targeted to mitochondria. Under oxidative stress, a PUF3 deleted strain exhibits more robust growth than wild-type cells and the shift in translation from polysomes to monosomes is attenuated, suggesting puf3Δ cells perceive less stress. In agreement, the ratio of reduced:oxidized glutathione, a major antioxidant and indicator of cellular redox state, is increased in unstressed puf3Δ cells but remains lower under stress. In untreated conditions, Puf3p migrates with polysomes rather than ribosome-free fractions, but this is lost under stress. Finally, reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) of Puf3p targets following affinity purification shows Puf3p-mRNA associations are maintained or increased under oxidative stress. Collectively, these results point to Puf3p acting as a translational repressor in a manner exceeding the global translational response, possibly by temporarily limiting synthesis of new mitochondrial proteins as cells adapt to the stress.
Nucleic Acids Research 10/2013; · 8.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Selected reaction monitoring (SRM) has a long history of use in the area of quantitative MS. In recent years, the approach has seen increased application to quantitative proteomics, facilitating multiplexed relative and absolute quantification studies in a variety of organisms. This article discusses SRM, after introducing the context of quantitative proteomics (specifically primarily absolute quantification) where it finds most application, and considers topics such as the theory and advantages of SRM, the selection of peptide surrogates for protein quantification, the design of optimal SRM co-ordinates and the handling of SRM data. A number of published studies are also discussed to demonstrate the impact that SRM has had on the field of quantitative proteomics.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The development of ion mobility (IM) MS instruments has the capability to provide an added dimension to peptide analysis pipelines in proteomics, but, as yet, there are few software tools available for analysing such data. IM can be used to provide additional separation of parent ions or product ions following fragmentation. In this work, we have created a set of software tools that are capable of converting three dimensional IM data generated from analysis of fragment ions into a variety of formats used in proteomics. We demonstrate that IM can be used to calculate the charge state of a fragment ion, demonstrating the potential to improve peptide identification by excluding non-informative ions from a database search. We also provide preliminary evidence of structural differences between b and y ions for certain peptide sequences but not others. All software tools and data sets are made available in the public domain at http://code.google.com/p/ion-mobility-ms-tools/.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cellular stress can globally inhibit translation initiation, and glucose removal from yeast causes one of the most dramatic effects in terms of rapidity and scale. Here we show that the same rapid inhibition occurs during yeast growth as glucose levels diminish. We characterize this novel regulation showing that it involves alterations within the 48S preinitiation complex. In particular, the interaction between eIF4A and eIF4G is destabilized, leading to a temporary stabilization of the eIF3-eIF4G interaction on the 48S complex. Under such conditions, specific mRNAs that are important for the adaptation to the new conditions must continue to be translated. We have determined which mRNAs remain translated early after glucose starvation. These experiments enable us to provide a physiological context for this translational regulation by ascribing defined functions that are translationally maintained or up-regulated. Overrepresented in this class of mRNA are those involved in carbohydrate metabolism, including several mRNAs from the pentose phosphate pathway. Our data support a hypothesis that a concerted preemptive activation of the pentose phosphate pathway, which targets both mRNA transcription and translation, is important for the transition from fermentative to respiratory growth in yeast.
Molecular biology of the cell 07/2011; 22(18):3379-93. · 5.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A simple reduction/labelling/extraction protocol has been developed to fractionate cortical matrix proteins from filament proteins in wool. Through differential labelling of cysteine residues their relative accessibility in the wool fibre has been investigated. This has allowed the preliminary development of a map of the chemical functionality that is accessible within wool fibres under native conditions. Protein analyses of wool subjected to mechanical action, wet chemical permonosulphate/sulphite treatment and dry argon plasma treatment revealed that none of these detectably improved the accessibility of functional groups at the wool cortex. It is anticipated that this analytical method can be extended to improve the sensitivity and scope with which chemical functionality within native fibres can be mapped and lead to a better understanding of the potential limits/opportunities for fibre modification.
International journal of biological macromolecules 05/2011; 49(3):323-30. · 2.37 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Selected reaction monitoring mass spectrometry has been combined with the use of an isotopically labelled synthetic protein, made up of proteotypic tryptic peptides selected from parasite proteins of interest. This allows, for the first time, absolute quantification of proteins from Plasmodium falciparum. This methodology is demonstrated to be of sufficient sensitivity to quantify, even within whole cell extracts, proteins of low abundance from the folate pathway as well as more abundant "housekeeping" proteins.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Raf/ERK (Extracellular Signal Regulated Kinase) signal transduction pathway controls numerous cellular processes, including growth, differentiation, cellular transformation and senescence. ERK activation is thought to involve complex spatial and temporal regulation, to achieve a high degree of specificity, though precisely how this is achieved remains to be confirmed. We report here that prolonged activation of a conditional form of c-Raf-1 (BXB-ER) leads to profound changes in the level and distribution of a heterochromatic histone mark. In mouse fibroblasts, the heterochromatic trimethylation of lysine 9 in histone H3 (H3K9Me3) is normally confined to pericentromeric regions. However, following ERK activation a genome-wide redistribution of H3K9Me3 correlates with loss of the histone modification from chromocentres and the appearance of numerous punctuate sites throughout the interphase nucleus. These epigenetic changes during interphase correlate with altered chromosome structure during mitosis, where robust H3K9Me3 signals appear within telomeric heterochromatin. This pattern of heterochromatinization is distinct from previously described oncogene induced senescence associated heterochromatin foci (SAHF), which are excluded from telomeres. The H3K9Me3 histone mark is known to bind the major heterochromatin protein HP1 and we show that the alterations in the distribution of this histone epistate correlate with redistribution of HP1β throughout the nucleus. Interestingly while ERK activation is fully reversible, the observed chromatin changes induced by epigenetic modifications are not reversible once established. We describe for the first time a link from prolonged ERK activation to stable changes in genome organization through redistribution of heterochromatic domains involving the telomeres. These epigenetic changes provide a possible mechanism through which prolonged activation of Raf/ERK can lead to growth arrest or the induction of differentiation, senescence and cancer.
PLoS ONE 10/2010; 5(10):e13322. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Plasmodium species are difficult to study using proteomic technology because they contain large amounts of haemoglobin-derived products (HDP), generated by parasite breakdown of host haemoglobin. HDP are known to interfere with isoelectric focussing, a cornerstone of fractionation strategies for the identification of proteins by mass spectrometry. In addition to the challenge presented by this material, as in most proteomes, there exists in this parasite a considerable dynamic range between proteins of high and low abundance. The enzymes of the folate pathway, a proven and widely used drug target, are included in the latter class.
This report describes a work-flow utilizing a parasite-specific extraction protocol that minimizes release of HDP into the lysate, followed by in-solution based OFFGEL™ electrophoresis at the protein level, trypsin digestion and mass spectrometric analysis.
It is demonstrated that, by removing HDP from parasite lysates, OFFGEL™-mediated protein separation is able to deliver reduced complexity protein fractions. Importantly, proteins with similar and predictable physical properties are sharply focussed within such fractions.
By following this novel workflow, data have been obtained which allow the unequivocal experimental identification by mass spectrometry of four of the six proteins involved in folate biosynthesis and recycling.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recycling of eIF2-GDP to the GTP-bound form constitutes a core essential, regulated step in eukaryotic translation. This reaction is mediated by eIF2B, a heteropentameric factor with important links to human disease. eIF2 in the GTP-bound form binds to methionyl initiator tRNA to form a ternary complex, and the levels of this ternary complex can be a critical determinant of the rate of protein synthesis. Here we show that eIF2B serves as the target for translation inhibition by various fusel alcohols in yeast. Fusel alcohols are endpoint metabolites from amino acid catabolism, which signal nitrogen scarcity. We show that the inhibition of eIF2B leads to reduced ternary complex levels and that different eIF2B subunit mutants alter fusel alcohol sensitivity. A DNA tiling array strategy was developed that overcame difficulties in the identification of these mutants where the phenotypic distinctions were too subtle for classical complementation cloning. Fusel alcohols also lead to eIF2alpha dephosphorylation in a Sit4p-dependent manner. In yeast, eIF2B occupies a large cytoplasmic body where guanine nucleotide exchange on eIF2 can occur and be regulated. Fusel alcohols impact on both the movement and dynamics of this 2B body. Overall, these results confirm that the guanine nucleotide exchange factor, eIF2B, is targeted by fusel alcohols. Moreover, they highlight a potential connection between the movement or integrity of the 2B body and eIF2B regulation.
Molecular biology of the cell 05/2010; 21(13):2202-16. · 5.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Unusually for a eukaryote, the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum expresses dihydrofolate synthase (DHFS) and folylpolyglutamate synthase (FPGS) as a single bifunctional protein. The two activities contribute to the essential pathway of folate biosynthesis and modification. The DHFS activity of recombinant PfDHFS-FPGS exhibited non-standard kinetics at high co-substrate (glutamate and ATP) concentrations, being partially inhibited by increasing concentrations of its principal substrate, dihydropteroate (DHP). Binding of DHP to the catalytic and inhibitory sites exhibited dissociation constants of 0.50microM and 1.25microM, respectively. DHFS activity measured under lower co-substrate concentrations, where data fitted the Michaelis-Menten equation, yielded apparent K(m) values of 0.88microM for DHP, 22.8microM for ATP and 5.97microM for glutamate. Of the substrates tested in FPGS assays, only tetrahydrofolate (THF) was efficiently converted to polyglutamylated forms, exhibiting standard kinetics with an apparent K(m) of 0.96microM; dihydrofolate, folate and the folate analogue methotrexate (MTX) were negligibly processed, emphasising the importance of the oxidation state of the pterin moiety. Moreover, MTX inhibited neither DHFS nor FPGS, even at high concentrations. Conversely, two phosphinate analogues of 7,8-dihydrofolate that mimic tetrahedral intermediates formed during DHFS- and FPGS-catalysed glutamylation were powerfully inhibitory. The K(i) value of an aryl phosphinate analogue against DHFS was 0.14microM and for an alkyl phosphinate against FPGS 0.091microM, with each inhibitor showing a high degree of specificity. This, combined with the absence of DHFS activity in humans, suggests PfDHFS-FPGS might represent a potential new drug target in the previously validated folate pathway of P. falciparum.
Molecular and Biochemical Parasitology 03/2010; 172(1):41-51. · 2.24 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The folate pathway enzyme serine hydroxymethyltransferase (SHMT) converts serine to glycine and 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate and is essential for the acquisition of one-carbon units for subsequent transfer reactions. 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate is used by thymidylate synthase to convert dUMP to dTMP for DNA synthesis. In Plasmodium falciparum an enzymatically functional SHMT (PfSHMTc) and a related, apparently inactive isoform (PfSHMTm) are found, encoded by different genes. Here, patterns of localization of the two isoforms during the parasite erythrocytic cycle are investigated.
Polyclonal antibodies were raised to PfSHMTc and PfSHMTm, and, together with specific markers for the mitochondrion and apicoplast, were employed in quantitative confocal fluorescence microscopy of blood-stage parasites.
As well as the expected cytoplasmic occupancy of PfSHMTc during all stages, localization into the mitochondrion and apicoplast occurred in a stage-specific manner. Although early trophozoites lacked visible organellar PfSHMTc, a significant percentage of parasites showed such fluorescence during the mid-to-late trophozoite and schizont stages. In the case of the mitochondrion, the majority of parasites in these stages at any given time showed no marked PfSHMTc fluorescence, suggesting that its occupancy of this organelle is of limited duration. PfSHMTm showed a distinctly more pronounced mitochondrial location through most of the erythrocytic cycle and GFP-tagging of its N-terminal region confirmed the predicted presence of a mitochondrial signal sequence. Within the apicoplast, a majority of mitotic schizonts showed a marked concentration of PfSHMTc, whose localization in this organelle was less restricted than for the mitochondrion and persisted from the late trophozoite to the post-mitotic stages. PfSHMTm showed a broadly similar distribution across the cycle, but with a distinctive punctate accumulation towards the ends of elongating apicoplasts. In very late post-mitotic schizonts, both PfSHMTc and PfSHMTm were concentrated in the central region of the parasite that becomes the residual body on erythrocyte lysis and merozoite release.
Both PfSHMTc and PfSHMTm show dynamic, stage-dependent localization among the different compartments of the parasite and sequence analysis suggests they may also reversibly associate with each other, a factor that may be critical to folate cofactor function, given the apparent lack of enzymic activity of PfSHMTm.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nuclear lamins are intermediate filament proteins that define the shape and stability of nuclei in mammalian cells. In addition to this dominant structural role, recent studies have suggested that the lamin proteins also regulate fundamental aspects of nuclear function. In order to understand different roles played by lamin proteins, we used RNA interference to generate a series of HeLa cell lines to study loss-of-function phenotypes associated with depletion of lamin protein expression. In this study, we used genome-wide proteomic approaches to monitor global changes in protein expression in cells with <10% of normal lamin A/C expression. Of 2000 protein spots analyzed by two-dimensional electrophoresis, only 38 showed significantly altered expression in lamin A/C depleted cells. Of these, 4 protein spots were up-regulated, and 34 were down-regulated. Significant changes were seen to involve the general reduction in expression of cytoskeletal proteins, consistent with altered functionality of the structural cellular networks. At the same time, alterations in expression of proteins involved in cellular metabolism correlated with altered patterns of metabolic activity. In order to link these two features, we used antibody microarrays to perform a focused analysis of expression of cell cycle regulatory proteins. This confirmed a general reduction in expression of proteins regulating cell cycle progression and alteration in signaling pathways that regulate the metabolic activity of cells. The cross-talk between signal transduction and the cytoskeleton emphasizes how structural and kinase-based networks are integrated in mammalian cells to fine-tune metabolic responses.Keywords: Nuclear lamin proteins; nuclear matrix; RNA interference; 2-D gel electrophoresis; mass spectrometry
Journal of Proteome Research 11/2009; 8(11). · 5.06 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Checkpoint kinase 1 (Chk1) plays a central role in the cellular response to DNA damage and also contributes to the efficacy of DNA replication in the absence of genomic stress. However, we have only limited knowledge regarding the molecular mechanisms that regulate differential Chk1 function in the absence and presence of DNA damage. To address this, we used vertebrate cells with compromised Chk1 function to analyze how altered Chk1 activity influences protein interactions in chromatin. Avian and mammalian cells with compromised Chk1 activity were used in combination with genomic stress, induced by UV, and DNA-associated proteomes were analyzed using 2-DE/MS proteomics and Western-blot analysis. Only one protein, the histone chaperone nucelophosmin, was altered consistently in line with changes in chromatin-associated Chk1 and increased in response to DNA damage. Purified Chk1 and NPM were shown to interact in vitro and strong in vivo interactions were implied from immunoprecipitation analysis of chromatin extracts. During chromatin immunoprecipitation, coassociation of the major cell cycle regulator proteins p53 and CDC25A with both Chk1 and NPM suggests that these proteins are components of complex interaction networks that operate to regulate cell proliferation and apoptosis in vertebrate cells.
Journal of Proteome Research 09/2009; 8(10):4693-704. · 5.06 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The dynamic ability of genomes to interact with discrete nuclear compartments appears to be essential for chromatin function. However, the extent to which structural nuclear proteins contribute to this level of organization is largely unresolved. To test the links between structure and function, we evaluated how nuclear lamins contribute to the organization of a major functional compartment, the nucleolus. HeLa cells with compromised expression of the genes encoding lamins were analyzed using high-resolution imaging and pull-down assays. When lamin B1 expression was depleted, inhibition of RNA synthesis correlated with complex structural changes within the nucleolar active centers until, eventually, the nucleoli were dispersed completely. With normal lamin expression, the nucleoli were highly plastic, with dramatic and freely reversible structural changes correlating with the demand for ribosome biogenesis. Preservation of the nucleolar compartment throughout these structural transitions is shown to be linked to lamin B1 expression, with the lamin B1 protein interacting with the major nucleolar protein nucleophosmin/B23.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Quantitative proteomics is a growing field where several experimental techniques such as those based around stable isotope
labelling are reaching maturity. These advances require the parallel development of informatics tools to process and analyse
the data, especially for high-throughput experiments seeking to quantify large numbers of proteins. We have developed a novel
algorithm for the quantitative analysis of stable isotope-based proteomics data at the peptide level. Without prior formal
identification of the peptides by MS/MS, the algorithm determines the mass charge ratio m/z and retention time t of stable
isotope-labelled peptide pairs and calculates their relative ratios. It supports several non-proprietary XML input formats
and requires only minimal parameter tuning and runs fully automated. We have tested its performance on a low complexity peptide
sample in an initial study. In comparison to a manual analysis and an automated approach using MSQuant, it performs as well
or better and therefore we believe it has utility for groups wishing to perform high-throughput experiments.
Computational Intelligence Methods for Bioinformatics and Biostatistics, 6th International Meeting, CIBB 2009, Genoa, Italy, October 15-17, 2009, Revised Selected Papers; 01/2009
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Toxoplasma gondii is one of the most widely distributed, and thus successful, parasites on earth. It is a protozoan of the phylum Apicomplexa
with a particularly broad host range, probably being able to infect any warm blooded animal (1). In such hosts, progress through
its asexual replication cycle involves two quite different forms of the parasite: the rapidly proliferating tachyzoite that
establishes the initial infection within many different types of host cells and the much more slowly replicating form, the
bradyzoite, that maintains infection within a more limited repertoire of cell types, usually throughout the remaining life
of the host.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Folates have a key role in metabolism, and the folate-dependent generation of DNA precursors in the form of deoxythymidine 5'-phosphate is particularly important for the replication of malaria parasites. Although Plasmodium falciparum can synthesize folate derivatives de novo, a long-standing mystery has been the apparent absence of a key enzyme, dihydroneopterin aldolase, in the classical folate biosynthetic pathway of this organism. The discovery that a different enzyme, pyruvoyltetrahydropterin synthase, can produce the necessary substrate for the subsequent step in folate synthesis raises the question of whether this solution is unique to P. falciparum. Bioinformatic analyses suggest otherwise and indicate that an alternative route to folate could be widespread among diverse microorganisms and could be a target for novel drugs.
Trends in Parasitology 10/2008; 24(11):502-8. · 6.22 Impact Factor