FMP Publications

Our publications are recorded in a searchable database since 2010, updates will be added regularly.

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Chemical shift assignments and secondary structure prediction for Q4DY78, a conserved kinetoplastid-specific protein from Trypanosoma cruzi
D'Andrea(*), E. D., Diehl, A., Schmieder, P., Oschkinat, H.; Pires(*), J. R.
Biomol NMR Assign, 10:325-328

Tags: NMR-Supported Structural Biology (Oschkinat), Solution NMR (Schmieder)

Abstract: Trypanosoma cruzi, Trypanosma brucei and Leishmania spp. are kinetoplastid protozoa causative agents of Chagas disease, sleeping sickness and leishmaniasis, respectively, neglected tropical diseases estimated to infect millions of people worldwide. Their genome sequencing has revealed approximately 50 % of genes encoding hypothetical proteins of unknown function, opening possibilities for novel target identification and drug discovery. Q4DY78 is a putative essential protein from T. cruzi conserved in the related kinetoplastids and divergent from mammalian host proteins. Here we report the (1)H, (15)N, and (13)C chemical shift assignments and secondary structure analysis of the Q4DY78 protein as basis for NMR structure determination, functional analysis and drug screening.

Temperature dependence of cross-effect dynamic nuclear polarization in rotating solids: advantages of elevated temperatures
Geiger, M. A., Orwick-Rydmark, M., Marker, K., Franks, W. T., Akhmetzyanov(*), D., Stöppler, D., Zinke, M., Specker, E., Nazare, M., Diehl, A., van Rossum, B. J., Aussenac(*), F., Prisner(*), T., Akbey, Ü.; Oschkinat, H.
Phys Chem Chem Phys, 18:30696-30704

Tags: NMR-Supported Structural Biology (Oschkinat), Medicinal Chemistry (Nazare), Molecular Biophysics (Lange, A.)

Abstract: Dynamic nuclear polarization exploits electron spin polarization to boost signal-to-noise in magic-angle-spinning (MAS) NMR, creating new opportunities in materials science, structural biology, and metabolomics studies. Since protein NMR spectra recorded under DNP conditions can show improved spectral resolution at 180-200 K compared to 110 K, we investigate the effects of AMUPol and various deuterated TOTAPOL isotopologues on sensitivity and spectral resolution at these temperatures, using proline and reproducibly prepared SH3 domain samples. The TOTAPOL deuteration pattern is optimized for protein DNP MAS NMR, and signal-to-noise per unit time measurements demonstrate the high value of TOTAPOL isotopologues for Protein DNP MAS NMR at 180-200 K. The combined effects of enhancement, depolarization, and proton longitudinal relaxation are surprisingly sample-specific. At 200 K, DNP on SH3 domain standard samples yields a 15-fold increase in signal-to-noise over a sample without radicals. 2D and 3D NCACX/NCOCX spectra were recorded at 200 K within 1 and 13 hours, respectively. Decreasing enhancements with increasing 2H-content at the CH2 sites of the TEMPO rings in CD3-TOTAPOL highlight the importance of protons in a sphere of 4-6 A around the nitroxyl group, presumably for polarization pickup from electron spins.

Dynamics of the Ligand Binding Domain Layer during AMPA Receptor Activation
Baranovic, J., Chebli, M., Salazar, H., Carbone, A. L., Faelber(*), K., Lau(*), A. Y., Daumke(*), O.; Plested, A. J.
Biophys J, 110:896-911

Tags: Molecular Neuroscience and Biophysics (Plested)

Abstract: Ionotropic glutamate receptors are postsynaptic tetrameric ligand-gated channels whose activity mediates fast excitatory transmission. Glutamate binding to clamshell-shaped ligand binding domains (LBDs) triggers opening of the integral ion channel, but how the four LBDs orchestrate receptor activation is unknown. Here, we present a high-resolution x-ray crystal structure displaying two tetrameric LBD arrangements fully bound to glutamate. Using a series of engineered metal ion trapping mutants, we showed that the more compact of the two assemblies corresponds to an arrangement populated during activation of full-length receptors. State-dependent cross-linking of the mutants identified zinc bridges between the canonical active LBD dimers that formed when the tetramer was either fully or partially bound by glutamate. These bridges also stabilized the resting state, consistent with the recently published full-length apo structure. Our results provide insight into the activation mechanism of glutamate receptors and the complex conformational space that the LBD layer can sample.

Bimodal antagonism of PKA signalling by ARHGAP36
Eccles(*), R. L., Czajkowski(*), M. T., Barth(*), C., Müller(*), P. M., McShane(*), E., Grunwald(*), S., Beaudette(*), P., Mecklenburg(*), N., Volkmer, R., Zühlke(*), K., Dittmar(*), G., Selbach(*), M., Hammes(*), A., Daumke(*), O., Klussmann(*), E., Urbe(*), S.; Rocks(*), O.
Nat Commun, 7:12963

Tags: Peptide Synthesis (Hackenberger/Volkmer)

Abstract: Protein kinase A is a key mediator of cAMP signalling downstream of G-protein-coupled receptors, a signalling pathway conserved in all eukaryotes. cAMP binding to the regulatory subunits (PKAR) relieves their inhibition of the catalytic subunits (PKAC). Here we report that ARHGAP36 combines two distinct inhibitory mechanisms to antagonise PKA signalling. First, it blocks PKAC activity via a pseudosubstrate motif, akin to the mechanism employed by the protein kinase inhibitor proteins. Second, it targets PKAC for rapid ubiquitin-mediated lysosomal degradation, a pathway usually reserved for transmembrane receptors. ARHGAP36 thus dampens the sensitivity of cells to cAMP. We show that PKA inhibition by ARHGAP36 promotes derepression of the Hedgehog signalling pathway, thereby providing a simple rationale for the upregulation of ARHGAP36 in medulloblastoma. Our work reveals a new layer of PKA regulation that may play an important role in development and disease.

AKAP18:PKA-RIIalpha structure reveals crucial anchor points for recognition of regulatory subunits of PKA
Götz, F., Roske(*), Y., Schulz(*), M. S., Autenrieth(*), K., Bertinetti(*), D., Faelber(*), K., Zühlke(*), K., Kreuchwig, A., Kennedy(*), E. J., Krause, G., Daumke(*), O., Herberg(*), F. W., Heinemann(*), U.; Klussmann(*), E.
Biochem J, 473:1881-1894

Tags: Structural Bioinformatics and Protein Design (Krause, G.), Anchored Signaling (Klussmann)

Abstract: A-kinase anchoring proteins (AKAPs) interact with the dimerization/docking (D/D) domains of regulatory subunits of the ubiquitous protein kinase A (PKA). AKAPs tether PKA to defined cellular compartments establishing distinct pools to increase the specificity of PKA signalling. Here, we elucidated the structure of an extended PKA-binding domain of AKAP18beta bound to the D/D domain of the regulatory RIIalpha subunits of PKA. We identified three hydrophilic anchor points in AKAP18beta outside the core PKA-binding domain, which mediate contacts with the D/D domain. Such anchor points are conserved within AKAPs that bind regulatory RII subunits of PKA. We derived a different set of anchor points in AKAPs binding regulatory RI subunits of PKA. In vitro and cell-based experiments confirm the relevance of these sites for the interaction of RII subunits with AKAP18 and of RI subunits with the RI-specific smAKAP. Thus we report a novel mechanism governing interactions of AKAPs with PKA. The sequence specificity of each AKAP around the anchor points and the requirement of these points for the tight binding of PKA allow the development of selective inhibitors to unequivocally ascribe cellular functions to the AKAP18-PKA and other AKAP-PKA interactions.

Liquid storage of boar semen: Current and future perspectives on the use of cationic antimicrobial peptides to replace antibiotics in semen extenders
Schulze(*), M., Dathe, M., Waberski(*), D.; Müller(*), K.
Theriogenology, 85:39-46

Tags: Peptide-Lipid-Interaction/ Peptide Transport (Dathe)

Abstract: Antibiotics are of great importance in boar semen extenders to ensure long shelf life of spermatozoa and to reduce transmission of pathogens into the female tract. However, the use of antibiotics carries a risk of developing resistant bacterial strains in artificial insemination laboratories and their spread via artificial insemination. Development of multiresistant bacteria is a major concern if mixtures of antibiotics are used in semen extenders. Minimal contamination prevention techniques and surveillance of critical hygiene control points proved to be efficient in reducing bacterial load and preventing development of antibiotic resistance. Nevertheless, novel antimicrobial concepts are necessary for efficient bacterial control in extended boar semen with a minimum risk of evoking antibiotic resistance. Enhanced efforts have been made in recent years in the design and use of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as alternatives to conventional antibiotics. The male genital tract harbors a series of endogenic substances with antimicrobial activity and additional functions relevant to the fertilization process. However, exogenic AMPs often exert dose- and time-dependent toxic effects on mammalian spermatozoa. Therefore, it is important that potential newly designed AMPs have only minor impacts on eukaryotic cells. Recently, synthetic magainin derivatives and cyclic hexapeptides were tested for their application in boar semen preservation. Bacterial selectivity, proteolytic stability, thermodynamic resistance, and potential synergistic interaction with conventional antibiotics propel predominantly cyclic hexapeptides into highly promising, leading candidates for further development in semen preservation. The time scale for the development of resistant pathogens cannot be predicted at this moment.

Lipopeptide-based micellar and liposomal carriers: Influence of surface charge and particle size on cellular uptake into blood brain barrier cells
Sydow, K., Nikolenko, H., Lorenz, D., Müller(*), R. H.; Dathe, M.
Eur J Pharm Biopharm, 109:130-139

Tags: Peptide-Lipid-Interaction/ Peptide Transport (Dathe)

Abstract: Lipopeptide-based micelles and liposomes were found to differ in cell recognition and uptake mode into blood brain barrier (BBB) endothelial cells. Here we analyse the role of size and surface charge of micelles and liposomes composed of different lipopeptide sequences with respect to uptake into human brain capillary (HBMEC) and aortic (HAoEC) endothelial cells. Comparable to the dipalmitoylated apolipoprotein E-derived P2A2, lipopeptides of cationic poly-arginine (P2Rn), poly-lysine (P2Kn) and an anionic glutamic-acid sequence (P2En) self assemble into micelles (12-14nm in diameter) with high surface charge density, and bind to small (SUVs, about 24nm in diameter) and large (LUV, about 100nm in diameter) liposomes at variable lipid to peptide ratios. The interaction pattern of the resulting particles with endothelial cells is highly variable as revealed by confocal laser scanning microscopic (CLSM) and fluorescence assisted cell sorting (FACS) studies. Micelles and SUVs with high P2A2 density are efficiently and selectively internalized into HBMEC. P2Kn micelles strongly accumulate in both the cytosol and at the cell membrane, while the interaction of liposomes tagged with a low amount of P2A2 and P2Kn with the cells was reduced. Anionic micelles seem to dissociate in the presence of cells and P2En molecules incorporate into the cellular membrane whereas the negatively charged liposomes hardly interact with cells. Surprisingly, all poly-R-based particles show high selectivity for HBMEC compared to HAoEC, independent of particle size and peptide surface density. The P2Rn-mediated internalization is highly efficient and partially clathrin-dependent. The oligo-R lipopeptide is considered to be most promising to selectively transport different drug carriers into the blood brain barrier.

C-type natriuretic peptide and natriuretic peptide receptor B signalling inhibits cardiac sympathetic neurotransmission and autonomic function
Buttgereit(*), J., Shanks(*), J., Li(*), D., Hao(*), G., Athwal(*), A., Langenickel(*), T. H., Wright(*), H., da Costa Goncalves, A. C., Monti(*), J., Plehm(*), R., Popova(*), E., Qadri(*), F., Lapidus(*), I., Ryan(*), B., Ozcelik(*), C., Paterson(*), D. J., Bader(*), M.; Herring(*), N.
Cardiovasc Res, 112:637-644

Tags: Anchored Signaling (Klussmann)

Abstract: AIMS: B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP)-natriuretic peptide receptor A (NPR-A) receptor signalling inhibits cardiac sympathetic neurotransmission, although C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) is the predominant neuropeptide of the nervous system with expression in the heart and vasculature. We hypothesized that CNP acts similarly to BNP, and that transgenic rats (TGRs) with neuron-specific overexpression of a dominant negative NPR-B receptor would develop heightened sympathetic drive. METHODS AND RESULTS: Mean arterial pressure and heart rate (HR) were significantly (P < 0.05) elevated in freely moving TGRs (n = 9) compared with Sprague Dawley (SD) controls (n = 10). TGR had impaired left ventricular systolic function and spectral analysis of HR variability suggested a shift towards sympathoexcitation. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated co-staining of NPR-B with tyrosine hydroxylase in stellate ganglia neurons. In SD rats, CNP (250 nM, n = 8) significantly reduced the tachycardia during right stellate ganglion stimulation (1-7 Hz) in vitro whereas the response to bath-applied norepinephrine (NE, 1 muM, n = 6) remained intact. CNP (250 nM, n = 8) significantly reduced the release of 3H-NE in isolated atria and this was prevented by the NPR-B antagonist P19 (250 nM, n = 6). The neuronal Ca2+ current (n = 6) and intracellular Ca2+ transient (n = 9, using fura-2AM) were also reduced by CNP in isolated stellate neurons. Treatment of the TGR (n = 9) with the sympatholytic clonidine (125 microg/kg per day) significantly reduced mean arterial pressure and HR to levels observed in the SD (n = 9). CONCLUSION: C-type natriuretic peptide reduces cardiac sympathetic neurotransmission via a reduction in neuronal calcium signalling and NE release through the NPR-B receptor. Situations impairing CNP-NPR-B signalling lead to hypertension, tachycardia, and impaired left ventricular systolic function secondary to sympatho-excitation.

Reversible Opening of Intercellular Junctions of Intestinal Epithelial and Brain Endothelial Cells With Tight Junction Modulator Peptides
Bocsik(*), A., Walter(*), F. R., Gyebrovszki(*), A., Fulop(*), L., Blasig, I., Dabrowski, S., Otvos(*), F., Toth(*), A., Rakhely(*), G., Veszelka(*), S., Vastag(*), M., Szabo-Revesz(*), P.; Deli(*), M. A.
Journal of pharmaceutical sciences, 105:754-765

Tags: Molecular Cell Physiology (Blasig, I.E.)

Abstract: The intercellular junctions restrict the free passage of hydrophilic compounds through the paracellular clefts. Reversible opening of the tight junctions of biological barriers is investigated as one of the ways to increase drug delivery to the systemic circulation or the central nervous system. Six peptides, ADT-6, HAV-6, C-CPE, 7-mer (FDFWITP, PN-78), AT-1002, and PN-159, acting on different integral membrane and linker junctional proteins were tested on Caco-2 intestinal epithelial cell line and a coculture model of the blood-brain barrier. All peptides tested in nontoxic concentrations showed a reversible tight junctions modulating effect and were effective to open the paracellular pathway for the marker molecules fluorescein and albumin. The change in the structure of cell-cell junctions was verified by immunostaining for occludin, claudin-4,-5, ZO-1, beta-catenin, and E-cadherin. Expression levels of occludin and claudins were measured in both models. We could demonstrate a selectivity of C-CPE, ADT-6, and HAV-6 peptides for epithelial cells and 7-mer and AT-1002 peptides for brain endothelial cells. PN-159 was the most effective modulator of junctional permeability in both models possibly acting via claudin-1 and -5. Our results indicate that these peptides can be effectively and selectively used as potential pharmaceutical excipients to improve drug delivery across biological barriers.

Occludin controls HIV transcription in brain pericytes via regulation of SIRT-1 activation
Castro(*), V., Bertrand(*), L., Luethen(*), M., Dabrowski, S., Lombardi(*), J., Morgan(*), L., Sharova(*), N., Stevenson(*), M., Blasig, I. E.; Toborek(*), M.
FASEB J, 30:1234-1246

Tags: Molecular Cell Physiology (Blasig, I.E.)

Abstract: HIV invades the brain early after infection; however, its interactions with the cells of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) remain poorly understood. Our goal was to evaluate the role of occludin, one of the tight junction proteins that regulate BBB functions in HIV infection of BBB pericytes. We provide evidence that occludin levels largely control the metabolic responses of human pericytes to HIV. Occludin in BBB pericytes decreased by 10% during the first 48 h after HIV infection, correlating with increased nuclear translocation of the gene repressor C-terminal-binding protein (CtBP)-1 and NFkappaB-p65 activation. These changes were associated with decreased expression and activation of the class III histone deacetylase sirtuin (SIRT)-1. Occludin levels recovered 96 h after infection, restoring SIRT-1 and reducing HIV transcription to 20% of its highest values. We characterized occludin biochemically as a novel NADH oxidase that controls the expression and activation of SIRT-1. The inverse correlation between occludin and HIV transcription was then replicated in human primary macrophages and differentiated monocytic U937 cells, in which occludin silencing resulted in 75 and 250% increased viral transcription, respectively. Our work shows that occludin has previously unsuspected metabolic properties and is a target of HIV infection, opening the possibility of designing novel pharmacological approaches to control HIV transcription.

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Leibniz-Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie im Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V. (FMP)
Campus Berlin-Buch
Robert-Roessle-Str. 10
13125 Berlin, Germany
+4930 94793 - 100 
+4930 94793 - 109 (Fax)

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