Matching Items (21)

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Recombinant Expression of CapBCA Membrane Proteins from Francisella tularensis

Description

Membrane proteins located within or as attachments to the cell membrane play critical roles in many essential cellular functions and host-pathogen interactions. Knowledge of the structure and function of membrane

Membrane proteins located within or as attachments to the cell membrane play critical roles in many essential cellular functions and host-pathogen interactions. Knowledge of the structure and function of membrane proteins in pathogenic species can allow for the development of specific vaccines and therapeutic agents against the pathogen. Francisella tularensis is an intracellular pathogen that is the causative agent of the severe, life-threatening infection, tularemia, in humans and other small mammals. F. tularensis is prevalent within the environment and is a potential bioterrorism agent due to its high virulence and its ability to be spread easily as an aerosol. The CapBCA membrane protein complex has been identified as a virulence factor of F. tularensis. This project, derived from the Membrane Proteins in Infections Diseases (MPID) Project, aims to successfully express the membrane proteins CapBCA, which are crucial to the pathogenic properties of F. tularensis. To accomplish this goal, methods for in vivo recombinant expression and purification of membrane proteins are in the process of being developed. The expression of the CapA component has been successful for some time, therefore, the goal of this study is to develop an approach toward recombinant in vivo membrane protein expression of both the CapB and CapC components of the CapBCA membrane protein complex. In this study, the CapB and CapC components were expressed for the first time in vivo through the use of the novel MPID vector, pelB-MBP. The expression of the CapB and CapC components will allow for large-scale expressions to commence with the end goal of determining the crystal structures of the individual proteins or the complex. Ultimately, it is hoped that knowledge of these molecular structures can lead to the development of a vaccine or other therapeutic agents against this pathogen.

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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Towards Characterization of Serum Antibodies Derived from Genetic Immunization and that Recognize Membrane Proteins of Therapeutic Interest

Description

Structure is a critical component in drug development. This project supports antibody- facilitated structure determination for the following eleven membrane proteins: the human histamine and dopamine G protein-coupled receptors (HRH4

Structure is a critical component in drug development. This project supports antibody- facilitated structure determination for the following eleven membrane proteins: the human histamine and dopamine G protein-coupled receptors (HRH4 and DRD2) involved in a wide variety of pathologies such as allergies, inflammation, asthma, pain along with Parkinson's and schizophrenia respectively, the human cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR), the human NaV1.8 voltage-gated sodium ion channel, the human TPC2 two-pore channel, the SARS virus proteins 3a, E and M, the MERS virus protein E and M, and the malarial chloroquine resistance transporter (PfCRT). Serum antibodies against these proteins were generated by genetic immunization, and both in vitro and in vivo expressed membrane proteins were created to characterize the serum antibodies. Plasmid clones were generated for genetic immunization, in vitro protein expression, and in vivo expression (HEK293T transfection). Serum antibodies were generated by genetic immunization of mice by gene gun. Genetic immunization promotes an immune response that allows for the generation of antibodies in the absence of purified protein. In vitro expression was accomplished through the novel technique: in vitro translation with hydrophobic magnetic beads (IVT-HMB). Transfections were performed using the HEK293T cell line to express the protein in vivo. The generated protein was then used in gel electrophoresis and silver stain and/or Western blot analyses to identify and visualize the proteins. These expressed proteins will allow for forthcoming characterization of the generated antibodies. The resulting antibodies will in turn enable structure determination of these important membrane proteins by co-crystallization.

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Date Created
  • 2017-05

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Design, Purification, and Analysis of Histamine Family Receptors for Crystallization

Description

G protein-coupled receptors, or GPCRs, are receptors located within the membrane of cells that elicit a wide array of cellular responses through their interactions with G proteins. Recent advances in

G protein-coupled receptors, or GPCRs, are receptors located within the membrane of cells that elicit a wide array of cellular responses through their interactions with G proteins. Recent advances in the use of lipid cubic phase (LCP) for the crystallization of GPCRs, as well as increased knowledge of techniques to improve receptor stability, have led to a large increase in the number of available GPCR structures, despite historic difficulties. This project is focused on the histamine family of receptors, which are Class A GPCRs that are involved in the body’s allergic and inflammatory responses. In particular, the goal of this project was to design, express, and purify histamine receptors with the ultimate goal of crystallization. Successive rounds of optimization included the use of recombinant DNA techniques in E.coli to truncate sections of the proteins and the insertion of several fusion partner proteins to improve receptor expression and stability. All constructs were expressed in a Bac-to-Bac baculovirus expression system using Sf9 insect cells, solubilized using n-Dodecyl-β-D-Maltoside (DDM), and purified using immobilized metal affinity chromatography. Constructs were then analyzed by SDS-Page, Western blot, and size-exclusion chromatography to determine their presence, purity, and homogeneity. Along with their expression data from insect cells, the most stable and homogeneous construct from each round was used to design successive optimizations. After 3 rounds of construct design for each receptor, much work remains to produce a stable sample that has the potential to crystallize. Future work includes further optimization of the insertion site of the fusion proteins, ligand screening for co-crystallization, optimization of purification conditions, and screening of potential thermostabilizing point mutations. Success in solving a structure will allow for a more detailed understanding of the receptor function in addition to its vital use in rational drug discovery.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

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Methods to Enhance Overexpression of Membrane Protein in Escherichia coli

Description

Membrane proteins (MPs) are an important aspect of cell survival that ensure structural integrity, signaling, and transportation of molecules. Since 2015, over 450 MPs have been studied to find their

Membrane proteins (MPs) are an important aspect of cell survival that ensure structural integrity, signaling, and transportation of molecules. Since 2015, over 450 MPs have been studied to find their functionalities and structure. Sufficient amounts of correctly folded MPs are needed to accurately study them through crystallography and other structural study methods. Use of recombinant technology is needed to overexpress MPs as natural abundance of MP is often too slow to provide the necessary amounts. However, an increase in toxicity and decrease in generation time deter the overexpression of MPs. The following report discusses two methods of enhancing overexpression in Escherchia coli, the use of T7 RNA polymerase (T7RNAP) and the reprogramming of chaperon pathways, that combats toxicity and promotes cell growth. Overall, both methods are proven to work effectively to overexpress MPs by regulating transcription rate of mRNA (T7RNAP) or folding and transporting of polypeptides to inner membrane (chaperon pathway). To further study the effectiveness of the two methods, they will need to be compared at the same conditions. In addition, a combination of two methods should also be studied to find out if the combination would have a great impact on the overexpression of the MPs.

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Date Created
  • 2018-05

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Modulating the Heat Shock Response in E. coli to Optimize Membrane Protein Expression

Description

Membrane proteins are essential for cell survival and show potential as pharmacological and therapeutic targets in the field of nanobiotechnology.[1,2] In spite of their promise in these fields, research surrounding

Membrane proteins are essential for cell survival and show potential as pharmacological and therapeutic targets in the field of nanobiotechnology.[1,2] In spite of their promise in these fields, research surrounding membrane proteins lags since their over-expression often leads to cell toxicity and death.[3,4] It was hypothesized that membrane protein expression could be regulated and optimized by modifying the heat shock response of Escherichia coli (E. coli). To test this hypothesis, the membrane protein expression pathway was reprogrammed using gene-blocks that were antisense to vital membrane protein DNA and RNA binding-site sequences and included an IbpA-σ32 heat shock promoter. Anti-PBAD and anti-HtdR gene-blocks were designed to have antisense sequences to the DNA of the arabinose PBAD promotor and Haloterrigena turkmenica deltarhodopsin (HtdR) transmembrane protein respectively. These sequences were then employed to be cloned into a pMM102 vector and grown in NEB-5α E. coli cells.

Stable glycerol stocks of the pIbpA-antiPBAD and pIbpA-antiHtdR in BW25113 cells with either a pBLN200 or pHtdR200 plasmid were created. Then after inducing the cells with L-arabinose and 10mM all-trans retinal to allow for membrane protein expression, spectrophotometry was used to test the optical density of the cells at an absorbance of 600nm. Although general trends showed that the pHtdR200-pMM102 and pHtdR200-pIbpA cells had lower optical densities than the pBLN200 cells of all types, the results were determined to be statistically insignificant. Continuing, the pHtdR200 cells of all types showed a purple phenotype when spun down, as expected, while the cells with the pBLN200 plasmid had a colorless phenotype in pellet form. Further work will include cloning a GFP gene-block to test the ability of the anti-PBAD sequence in tuning the transcription of the GFP protein.

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Date Created
  • 2018-05

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Elucidating Structural and Functional Information on the Human Cold-Sensing Protein TRPM8 via Isolating the Pore Domain and Cross-Chimeric Studies

Description

Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) ion channels are a diverse family of nonselective, polymodal sensors in uni- and multicellular eukaryotes that are implicated in an assortment of biological contexts and human

Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) ion channels are a diverse family of nonselective, polymodal sensors in uni- and multicellular eukaryotes that are implicated in an assortment of biological contexts and human disease. The cold-activated TRP Melastatin-8 (TRPM8) channel, also recognized as the human body's primary cold sensor, is among the few TRP channels responsible for thermosensing. Despite sustained interest in the channel, the mechanisms underlying TRPM8 activation, modulation, and gating have proved challenging to study and remain poorly understood. In this thesis, I offer data collected on various expression, extraction, and purification conditions tested in E. Coli expression systems with the aim to optimize the generation of a structurally stable and functional human TRPM8 pore domain (S5 and S6) construct for application in structural biology studies. These studies, including the biophysical technique nuclear magnetic spectroscopy (NMR), among others, will be essential for elucidating the role of the TRPM8 pore domain in in regulating ligand binding, channel gating, ion selectively, and thermal sensitivity. Moreover, in the second half of this thesis, I discuss the ligation-independent megaprimer PCR of whole-plasmids (MEGAWHOP PCR) cloning technique, and how it was used to generate chimeras between TRPM8 and its nearest analog TRPM2. I review steps taken to optimize the efficiency of MEGAWHOP PCR and the implications and unique applications of this novel methodology for advancing recombinant DNA technology. I lastly present preliminary electrophysiological data on the chimeras, employed to isolate and study the functional contributions of each individual transmembrane helix (S1-S6) to TRPM8 menthol activation. These studies show the utility of the TRPM8\u2014TRPM2 chimeras for dissecting function of TRP channels. The average current traces analyzed thus far indicate that the S2 and S3 helices appear to play an important role in TRPM8 menthol modulation because the TRPM8[M2S2] and TRPM8[M2S3] chimeras significantly reduce channel conductance in the presence of menthol. The TRPM8[M2S4] chimera, oppositely, increases channel conductance, implying that the S4 helix in native TRPM8 may suppress menthol modulation. Overall, these findings show that there is promise in the techniques chosen to identify specific regions of TRPM8 crucial to menthol activation, though the methods chosen to study the TRPM8 pore independent from the whole channel may need to be reevaluated. Further experiments will be necessary to refine TRPM8 pore solubilization and purification before structural studies can proceed, and the electrophysiology traces observed for the chimeras will need to be further verified and evaluated for consistency and physiological significance.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-05

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Understanding the Molecular Mechanisms of TRP Channel Activity

Description

Transient receptor potential (TRP) channels are a diverse family of polymodally gated nonselective cation channels implicated in a variety of pathophysiologies. Two channels of specific interest are transient receptor potential

Transient receptor potential (TRP) channels are a diverse family of polymodally gated nonselective cation channels implicated in a variety of pathophysiologies. Two channels of specific interest are transient receptor potential melastatin 8 (TRPM8) and transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1).
TRPM8 is the primary cold sensor in humans and is activated by ligands that feel cool such as menthol and icilin. It is implicated to be involved in a variety of cancers, nociception, obesity, addiction, and thermosensitivity. There are thought to be conserved regions of structural and functional importance to the channel which can be identified by looking at the evolution of TRPM8 over time. Along with this, looking at different isoforms of TRPM8 which are structurally very different but functionally similar can help isolate regions of functional interest as well. Between TRP channels, the transmembrane domain is well conserved and thought to be important for sensory physiology. To learn about these aspects of TRPM8, three evolutionary constructs, the last common primate, the last common mammalian, and the last common vertebrate ancestor TRPM8 were cloned and subjected to preliminary studies. In addition to the initial ancestral TRPM8 studies, fundamental studies were initiated in method development to evaluate the use of biological signaling sequences to attempt to force non-trafficking membrane protein isoforms and biophysical constructs to the plasma membrane. To increase readout for these and other studies, a cellular based fluorescence assay was initiated. Eventual completion of these efforts will lead to better understanding of the mechanism that underlie TRPM8 function and provide enhanced general methods for ion channel studies.
Beyond TRPM8 studies, an experiment was designed to probe mechanistic features of TRPV1 ligand activation. TRPV1 is also a thermosensitive channel in the TRP family, sensing heat and vanilloid ligands like capsaicin, commonly found in chili peppers. This channel is also involved in many proinflammatory interactions and associated with cancers, nociception, and addiction. Better understanding binding interactions can lead to attempts to create therapeutics.

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Date Created
  • 2020-05

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Exploring Structure and Function of Human Cold Sensing Protein TRPM8 with ROSETTA Comparative Models

Description

Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) channels are a diverse class of ion channels notable as polymodal sensors. TRPM8 is a TRP channel implicated in cold sensation, nociception, and a variety of

Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) channels are a diverse class of ion channels notable as polymodal sensors. TRPM8 is a TRP channel implicated in cold sensation, nociception, and a variety of human diseases, including obesity and cancer. Despite sustained interest in TRPM8 since its discovery in 2001, many of the molecular mechanisms that underlie function are not yet clear. Knowledge of these properties could have implications for medicine and physiological understanding of sensation and signaling. Structures of TRP channels have proven challenging to solve, but recent Cryoelectron microscopy (Cryo-EM) structures of TRPV1 provide a basis for homology-based modeling of TRP channel structures and interactions. I present an ensemble of 11,000 Rosetta computational homology models of TRPM8 based on the recent Cryo-EM apo structure of TRPV1 (PDB code:3J5P). Site-directed mutagenesis has provided clues about which residues are most essential for modulatory ligands to bind, so the models presented provide a platform to investigate the structural basis of TRPM8 ligand modulation complementary to existing functional and structural information. Menthol and icilin appear to interact with interfacial residues in the sensor domain (S1-S4). One consensus feature of these sites is the presence of local contacts to the S4 helix, suggesting this helix may be mechanistically involved with the opening of the pore. Phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2)has long been known to interact with the C-terminus of TRPM8, and some of the homology models contain plausible binding pockets where PIP2 can come into contact with charged residues known to be essential for PIP2 modulation. Future in silico binding experiments could provide testable hypothesis for in vitro structural studies, and experimental data (e.g. distance constraints from electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy [EPR]) could further refine the models.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2015-05

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CHALLENGES IN THE EXPRESSION AND PURIFICATION OF INTERCELLULAR ADHESION MOLECULE- 1

Description

The Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1 (ICAM-1, known as CD54) is a cell surface type I transmembrane glycoprotein with a molecular weight of 85 to 110 kDa. The primary function of ICAM-1

The Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1 (ICAM-1, known as CD54) is a cell surface type I transmembrane glycoprotein with a molecular weight of 85 to 110 kDa. The primary function of ICAM-1 is to provide adhesion between endothelial cells and leukocytes after injury or stress. ICAM-1 is used as a receptor for various pathogens such as rhinoviruses, coxsackievirus A21 and the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. ICAM-1 contains five immunoglobulin (Ig) domains in its long N-terminal extracellular region, a hydrophobic transmembrane domain, and a small C-terminal cytoplasmic domain. The Ig domains 1-2 and Ig domains 3-4-5 have been crystallized separately and their structure solved, however the full ICAM-1 structure has not been solved. Because ICAM-1 appears to be important for the mediation of cell-to-cell communication in physiological and pathological conditions, gaining a structural understanding of the full-length membrane anchored ICAM-1 is desirable. In this context, we have transiently expressed a plant-optimized gene encoding human ICAM-1 in Nicotiana benthamiana plants using the MagnICON expression system. The plant produced ICAM-1 is forming aggregates according to previous data. Thus, the current extraction and purification protocols have been altered to include TCEP, a reducing agent. The protein was purified using TALON metal affinity resin and partially characterized using various biochemical techniques. Our results show that there is a reduction in aggregation formation with the use of TCEP.

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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The Expression and Initial Biophysical Characterization of the Human Ion Channel TRPM8 Pore Domain Plus

Description

Transient receptor potential (TRP) channels are a superfamily of ion channels found in plasma membranes of both single-celled and multicellular organisms. TRP channels all share the common aspect of having

Transient receptor potential (TRP) channels are a superfamily of ion channels found in plasma membranes of both single-celled and multicellular organisms. TRP channels all share the common aspect of having six transmembrane helices and a TRP domain. These structures tetramerize to form a receptor-activated non-selective ion channel. The specific protein being investigated in this thesis is the human transient receptor potential melastatin 8 (hTRPM8), a channel activated by the chemical ligand menthol and temperatures below 25 °C. TRPM8 is responsible for cold sensing and is related to pain relief associated with cooling compounds. TRPM8 has also been found to play a role in the regulation of various types of tumors. The structure of TRPM8 has been obtained through cryo-electron microscopy, but the functional contribution of individual portions of the protein to the overall protein function is unknown.
To gain more information about the function of the transmembrane region of hTRPM8, it was expressed in Escherichia coli (E. coli) and purified in detergent membrane mimics for experimentation. The construct contains the S4-S5 linker, pore domain (S5 and S6 transmembrane helices), pore helix, and TRP box. hTRPM8-PD+ was purified in the detergents n-Dodecyl-B-D-Maltoside (DDM), 16:0 Lyso PG, 1-Palmitoyl-2-hydroxy-sn-glycero-3-phosphoglycerol (LPPG), and 14:0 Lyso PG, 1-Myristoyl-2-hydroxy-sn-glycero-3-phosphoglycerol (LMPG) to determine which detergent resulted in a hTRPM8-PD+ sample of the most stability, purity, and highest concentrations. Following bacterial expression and protein purification, hTRPM8-PD+ was studied and characterized with circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy to learn more about the secondary structures and thermodynamic properties of the construct. Further studies can be done with more circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, planar lipid bilayer (BLM) electrophysiology, and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) to gain more understanding of how the pore domain plus contributes to the activity of the whole protein construct.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019-12