[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Orientation of spindles and cell division planes during development of many species ensures that correct cell-cell contacts are established, which is vital for proper tissue formation. This is a tightly regulated process involving a complex interplay of various signals. The molecular mechanisms underlying several of these pathways are still incompletely understood. Here, we identify the signaling cascade of the C. elegans latrophilin homolog LAT-1, an essential player in the coordination of anterior-posterior spindle orientation during the fourth round of embryonic cell division. We show that the receptor mediates a G protein-signaling pathway revealing that G-protein signaling in oriented cell division is not solely GPCR-independent. Genetic analyses showed that through the interaction with a Gs protein LAT-1 elevates intracellular cyclic AMP (cAMP) levels in the C. elegans embryo. Stimulation of this G-protein cascade in lat-1 null mutant nematodes is sufficient to orient spindles and cell division planes in the embryo in the correct direction. Finally, we demonstrate that LAT-1 is activated by an intramolecular agonist to trigger this cascade. Our data support a model in which a novel, GPCR-dependent G protein-signaling cascade mediated by LAT-1 controls alignment of cell division planes in an anterior-posterior direction via a metabotropic Gs-protein/adenylyl cyclase pathway by regulating intracellular cAMP levels.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Adhesion GPCRs (aGPCRs) form the second largest, yet most enigmatic class of the GPCR superfamily. Although the physiologic importance of aGPCRs was demonstrated in several studies, the majority of these receptors is still orphan with respect to their agonists and signal transduction. Recent studies reported that aGPCRs are activated through a tethered peptide agonist, coined the Stachel sequence. The Stachel sequence is the most C-terminal part of the highly conserved GPCR autoproteolysis-inducing domain. Here, we used cell culture-based assays to investigate 2 natural splice variants within the Stachel sequence of the orphan Gs coupling aGPCR GPR114/ADGRG5. There is 1 variant constitutively active in cAMP assays (∼25-fold over empty vector) and sensitive to mechano-activation. The other variant has low basal activity in cAMP assays (6-fold over empty vector) and is insensitive to mechano-activation. In-depth mutagenesis studies of these functional differences revealed that the N-terminal half of the Stachel sequence confers the agonistic activity, whereas the C-terminal part orientates the agonistic core sequence to the transmembrane domain. Sequence comparison and functional testing suggest that the proposed mechanism of Stachel-mediated activation is relevant not only to GPR114 but to aGPCRs in general.-Wilde, C., Fischer, L., Lede, V., Kirchberger, J., Rothemund, S., Schöneberg, T., Liebscher, I. The constitutive activity of the adhesion GPCR GPR114/ADGRG5 is mediated by its tethered agonist.
No preview · Article · Oct 2015 · The FASEB Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The family of adhesion G protein-coupled receptors (aGPCRs) comprises 33 members in the human genome, which are subdivided into nine subclasses. Many aGPCRs undergo an autoproteolytic process via their GPCR Autoproteolysis-INducing (GAIN) domain during protein maturation to generate an N- and a C-terminal fragments, NTF and CTF, respectively. The NTF and CTF are non-covalently reassociated on the plasma membrane to form a single receptor unit. How aGPCRs are activated upon ligand binding remains one of the leading questions in the field of aGPCR research. Recent work from our labs and others shows that ligand binding can remove the NTF from the plasma membrane-bound CTF, exposing a tethered agonist which potently activates downstream signaling.
No preview · Article · Sep 2015 · Journal of Receptor and Signal Transduction Research
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Kiwi, comprising five species from the genus Apteryx, are endangered, ground-dwelling bird species endemic to New Zealand. They are the smallest and only nocturnal representatives of the ratites. The timing of kiwi adaptation to a nocturnal niche and the genomic innovations, which shaped sensory systems and morphology to allow this adaptation, are not yet fully understood.
We sequenced and assembled the brown kiwi genome to 150-fold coverage and annotated the genome using kiwi transcript data and non-redundant protein information from multiple bird species. We identified evolutionary sequence changes that underlie adaptation to nocturnality and estimated the onset time of these adaptations. Several opsin genes involved in color vision are inactivated in the kiwi. We date this inactivation to the Oligocene epoch, likely after the arrival of the ancestor of modern kiwi in New Zealand. Genome comparisons between kiwi and representatives of ratites, Galloanserae, and Neoaves, including nocturnal and song birds, show diversification of kiwi’s odorant receptors repertoire, which may reflect an increased reliance on olfaction rather than sight during foraging. Further, there is an enrichment of genes influencing mitochondrial function and energy expenditure among genes that are rapidly evolving specifically on the kiwi branch, which may also be linked to its nocturnal lifestyle.
The genomic changes in kiwi vision and olfaction are consistent with changes that are hypothesized to occur during adaptation to nocturnal lifestyle in mammals. The kiwi genome provides a valuable genomic resource for future genome-wide comparative analyses to other extinct and extant diurnal ratites.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
3-Iodothyronamine (3-T1AM), a signaling molecule with structural similarities to thyroid hormones, induces numerous physiological responses including reversible body temperature decline. One target of 3-T1AM is the trace amine-associated receptor 1 (TAAR1), which is a member of the rhodopsin-like family of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). Interestingly, the effects of 3-T1AM remain detectable in TAAR1 knockout mice, suggesting further targets for 3-T1AM such as adrenergic receptors. Therefore, we evaluated whether β-adrenergic receptor 1 (ADRB1) and 2 (ADRB2) signaling is affected by 3-T1AM in HEK293 cells and in human conjunctival epithelial cells (IOBA-NHC), where these receptors are highly expressed endogenously.
A label-free EPIC system for prescreening the 3-T1AM-induced effects on ADRB1 and ADRB2 in transfected HEK293 cells was used. In addition, ADRB1 and ADRB2 activation was analyzed using a cyclic AMP assay and a MAPK reporter gene assay. Finally, fluorescence Ca(2+) imaging was utilized to delineate 3-T1AM-induced Ca(2+) signaling.
3-T1AM (10(-5)-10(-10)M) enhanced isoprenaline-induced ADRB2-mediated Gs signaling but not that of ADRB1-mediated signaling. MAPK signaling remained unaffected for both receptors. In IOBA-NHC cells, norepinephrine-induced Ca(2+) influxes were blocked by the nonselective ADRB blocker timolol (10 µM), indicating that ADRBs are most likely linked with Ca(2+) channels. Notably, timolol was also found to block 3-T1AM (10(-5)M)-induced Ca(2+) influx.
The presented data support that 3-T1AM directly modulates β-adrenergic receptor signaling. The relationship between 3-T1AM and β-adrenergic signaling also reveals a potential therapeutic value for suppressing Ca(2+) channel-mediated inflammation processes, occurring in eye diseases such as conjunctivitis.
No preview · Article · May 2015 · European Thyroid Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objectives:
The trace amine-associated receptor 1 (Taar1) is a Gs protein-coupled receptor activated by trace amines, such as β-phenylethylamine (β-PEA) and 3-iodothyronamine (T1AM). T1AM is an endogenous biogenic amine and thyroid hormone derivative that exerts several biological functions. However, the physiological relevance of T1AM acting via Taar1 is still under discussion. Therefore, we studied the structural and functional evolution of Taar1 in vertebrates to provide evidence for a conserved Taar1-mediated T1AM function.
We searched public sequence databases to retrieve Taar1 sequence information from vertebrates. We cloned and functionally characterized Taar1 from selected vertebrate species using cAMP assays to determine the evolutionary conservation of T1AM action at Taar1.
We found intact open reading frames of Taar1 in more than 100 vertebrate species, including mammals, sauropsids and amphibians. Evolutionary conservation analyses of Taar1 protein sequences revealed a high variation in amino acid residues proposed to be involved in agonist binding, especially in rodent Taar1 orthologs. Functional characterization showed that T1AM, β-PEA and p-tyramine (p-Tyr) act as agonists at all tested orthologs, but EC50 values of T1AM at rat Taar1 differed significantly when compared to all other tested vertebrate Taar1.
The high structural conservation of Taar1 throughout vertebrate evolution highlights the physiological relevance of Taar1, but species-specific differences in T1AM potency at Taar1 orthologs suggest a specialization of rat Taar1 for T1AM recognition. In contrast, β-PEA and p-Tyr potencies were rather conserved throughout all tested Taar1 orthologs. We provide evidence that the observed differences in potency are related to differences in constraint during Taar1 evolution.
Full-text · Article · May 2015 · European Thyroid Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Most in vivo effects of 3-iodothyronamine (3-T1AM) have been thus far thought to be mediated by binding at the trace amine-associated receptor 1 (TAAR1). Inconsistently, the 3-T1AM induced hypothermic effect still persist in Taar1 knockout mice, suggesting additional receptor targets. In support of this general assumption, it has previously been reported that 3-T1AM also binds to the alpha-2A-adrenergic receptor (ADRA2A) modulating insulin secretion. However, the mechanism of this effect remains unclear. We tested two different scenarios as explanation: the sole action of 3-T1AM at ADRA2A and a combined action of 3-T1AM at ADRA2A and TAAR1, which is also expressed in pancreatic islets. We first investigated a potential general signaling modification using the label-free EPIC-technology and then specified changes in signaling by cAMP inhibition and MAPK (ERK1/2) determination. We found that 3-T1AM induces Gi/o activation at ADRA2A and reduced the nor-epinephrine (NorEpi) induced MAPK activation. Interestingly, in ADRA2A/TAAR1 hetero-oligomers application of NorEpi resulted in uncoupling of the Gi/o signaling pathway, but did not affect MAPK activation. However, 3-T1AM application in mice over a period of six days at the daily dose of 5 mg/Kg had no significant effects on glucose homeostasis. In summary, we report an agonistic effect of 3-T1AM on the ADRA2A mediated Gi/o pathway, but an antagonistic effect on MAPK induced by NorEpi. Moreover, in ADRA2A/TAAR1 hetero-oligomers the capacity of NorEpi to stimulate Gi/o-signaling is reduced by co-stimulation with 3-T1AM. This study, therefore, points to a complex spectrum of signaling modification mediated by 3-T1AM at different GPCRs.
No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · Journal of Molecular Endocrinology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Adhesion family forms a large branch of the pharmacologically important superfamily of G protein–coupled receptors (GPCRs). As Adhesion GPCRs increasingly receive attention from a wide spectrum of biomedical fields, the Adhesion GPCR Consortium, together with the International Union of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology Committee on Receptor Nomenclature and Drug Classification, proposes a unified nomenclature for Adhesion GPCRs. The new names have ADGR as common dominator followed by a letter and a number to denote each subfamily and subtype, respectively. The new names, with old and alternative names within parentheses, are: ADGRA1 (GPR123), ADGRA2 (GPR124), ADGRA3 (GPR125), ADGRB1 (BAI1), ADGRB2 (BAI2), ADGRB3 (BAI3), ADGRC1 (CELSR1), ADGRC2 (CELSR2), ADGRC3 (CELSR3), ADGRD1 (GPR133), ADGRD2 (GPR144), ADGRE1 (EMR1, F4/80), ADGRE2 (EMR2), ADGRE3 (EMR3), ADGRE4 (EMR4), ADGRE5 (CD97), ADGRF1 (GPR110), ADGRF2 (GPR111), ADGRF3 (GPR113), ADGRF4 (GPR115), ADGRF5 (GPR116, Ig-Hepta), ADGRG1 (GPR56), ADGRG2 (GPR64, HE6), ADGRG3 (GPR97), ADGRG4 (GPR112), ADGRG5 (GPR114), ADGRG6 (GPR126), ADGRG7 (GPR128), ADGRL1 (latrophilin-1, CIRL-1, CL1), ADGRL2
(latrophilin-2, CIRL-2, CL2), ADGRL3 (latrophilin-3, CIRL-3, CL3), ADGRL4 (ELTD1, ETL), and ADGRV1 (VLGR1, GPR98). This review covers all major biologic aspects of Adhesion GPCRs, including evolutionary origins, interaction partners, signaling, expression, physiologic functions, and therapeutic potential.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective:
Application of 3-iodothyronamine (3-T1AM) results in decreased body temperature and body weight in rodents. The trace amine-associated receptor (TAAR) 1, a family A G protein-coupled receptor, is a target of 3-T1AM. However, 3-T1AM effects still persist in mTaar1 knockout mice, which suggest so far unknown further receptor targets that are of physiological relevance. TAAR5 is a highly conserved TAAR subtype among mammals and we here tested TAAR5 as a potential 3-T1AM target. First, we investigated mouse Taar5 (mTaar5) expression in several brain regions of the mouse in comparison to mTaar1. Secondly, to unravel the full spectrum of signaling capacities, we examined the distinct Gs-, Gi/o-, G12/13-, Gq/11- and MAP kinase-mediated signaling pathways of mouse and human TAAR5 under ligand-independent conditions and after application of 3-T1AM. We found overlapping localization of mTaar1 and mTaar5 in the amygdala and ventromedial hypothalamus of the mouse brain. Second, the murine and human TAAR5 (hTAAR5) display significant basal activity in the Gq/11 pathway but show differences in the basal activity in Gs and MAP kinase signaling. In contrast to mTaar5, 3-T1AM application at hTAAR5 resulted in significant reduction in basal IP3 formation and MAP kinase signaling. In conclusion, our data suggest that the human TAAR5 is a target for 3-T1AM, exhibiting inhibitory effects on IP3 formation and MAP kinase signaling pathways, but does not mediate Gs signaling effects as observed for TAAR1. This study also indicates differences between TAAR5 orthologs with respect to their signaling profile. In consequence, 3-T1AM-mediated effects may differ between rodents and humans.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Polymorphisms in the first intron of FTO have been robustly replicated for associations with obesity. In the Sorbs, a Slavic population resident in Germany, the strongest effect on body mass index (BMI) was found for a variant in the third intron of FTO (rs17818902). Since this may indicate population specific effects of FTO variants, we initiated studies testing FTO for signatures of selection in vertebrate species and human populations.
First, we analyzed the coding region of 35 vertebrate FTO orthologs with Phylogenetic Analysis by Maximum Likelihood (PAML, ω = dN/dS) to screen for signatures of selection among species. Second, we investigated human population (Europeans/CEU, Yoruba/YRI, Chinese/CHB, Japanese/JPT, Sorbs) SNP data for footprints of selection using DnaSP version 4.5 and the Haplotter/PhaseII. Finally, using ConSite we compared transcription factor (TF) binding sites at sequences harbouring FTO SNPs in intron three.
PAML analyses revealed strong conservation in coding region of FTO (ω<1). Sliding-window results from population genetic analyses provided highly significant (p<0.001) signatures for balancing selection specifically in the third intron (e.g. Tajima's D in Sorbs = 2.77). We observed several alterations in TF binding sites, e.g. TCF3 binding site introduced by the rs17818902 minor allele.
Population genetic analysis revealed signatures of balancing selection at the FTO locus with a prominent signal in intron three, a genomic region with strong association with BMI in the Sorbs. Our data support the hypothesis that genes associated with obesity may have been under evolutionary selective pressure.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GPR34 is a Gi/o protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) of the nucleotide receptor P2Y12-like group. This receptor is highly expressed in microglia, however, the functional relevance of GPR34 in these glial cells is unknown. Previous results suggested an impaired immune response in GPR34-deficient mice infected with Cryptococcus neoformans. Here we show that GPR34 deficiency results in morphological changes in retinal and cortical microglia. RNA sequencing analysis of microglia revealed a number of differentially expressed transcripts involved in cell motility and phagocytosis. We found no differences in microglial motility after entorhinal cortex lesion and in response to laser lesion. However, GPR34-deficient microglia showed reduced phagocytosis activity in both retina and acutely isolated cortical slices. Our study identifies GPR34 as an important signaling component controlling microglial function, morphology and phagocytosis. GLIA 2014