Friday, January 21, 2011

Hot off the presses! Jan 21 mol cell

The Jan 21 issue of the mol cell is now up on Pubget (About mol cell): if you're at a subscribing institution, just click the link in the latest link at the home page. (Note you'll only be able to get all the PDFs in the issue if your institution subscribes to Pubget.)

Latest Articles Include:

  • How One Bad Protein Spoils the Barrel: Structural Details of β2-Microglobulin Amyloidogenicity
    - mol cell 41(2):129-131 (2011)
    In this issue, Eichner et al. (2011) describe at atomic resolution the structure of an amyloidogenic state of β2-microglobulin and how it may corrupt a soluble counterpart in the pathological scenario that ensues when good proteins go to the "dark side'" and form infectious toxic amyloid.
  • Regulator of Ras Depalmitoylation and Retrograde Trafficking: A New Hat for FKBP
    - mol cell 41(2):131-133 (2011)
    In this issue of Molecular Cell, Ahearn et al. (2011) identified FKBP12 as a novel regulator of Ras signaling through its modulation of depalmitoylation of H-Ras and its recycling from plasma membrane to the Golgi.
  • Many Paths to the Same End: Histone Transcripts Recruit Canonical Initiation Factors through Unconventional Interactions
    - mol cell 41(2):133-135 (2011)
    In this issue of Molecular Cell, Eriani and colleagues show that histone transcripts recruit translation initiation factors through an alternate pathway reminiscent of viral translation, suggesting a broader role for noncanonical translation initiation on cellular transcripts (Martin et al., 2011).
  • A New Role for miR-182 in DNA Repair
    - mol cell 41(2):135-137 (2011)
    A role for miRNAs in modulating cellular responses to DNA damage and chemotherapy is emerging. In this issue of Molecular Cell, Moskwa and colleagues propose a novel function for miR-182 in the posttranscriptional regulation of BRCA1 expression and in DNA repair (Moskwa et al., 2011).
  • Sirt3 Promotes the Urea Cycle and Fatty Acid Oxidation during Dietary Restriction
    - mol cell 41(2):139-149 (2011)
    Emerging evidence suggests that protein acetylation is a broad-ranging regulatory mechanism. Here we utilize acetyl-peptide arrays and metabolomic analyses to identify substrates of mitochondrial deacetylase Sirt3. We identified ornithine transcarbamoylase (OTC) from the urea cycle, and enzymes involved in β-oxidation. Metabolomic analyses of fasted mice lacking Sirt3 (sirt3−/−) revealed alterations in β-oxidation and the urea cycle. Biochemical analysis demonstrated that Sirt3 directly deacetylates OTC and stimulates its activity. Mice under caloric restriction (CR) increased Sirt3 protein levels, leading to deacetylation and stimulation of OTC activity. In contrast, sirt3−/− mice failed to deacetylate OTC in response to CR. Inability to stimulate OTC under CR led to a failure to reduce orotic acid levels, a known outcome of OTC deficiency. Thus, Sirt3 directly regulates OTC activity and promotes the urea cycle during CR, and the results suggest that under l! ow energy input, Sirt3 modulates mitochondria by promoting amino acid catabolism and β-oxidation.
  • The Soluble Form of Bax Regulates Mitochondrial Fusion via MFN2 Homotypic Complexes
    - mol cell 41(2):150-160 (2011)
    In mammals, fusion of the mitochondrial outer membrane is controlled by two DRPs, MFN1 and MFN2, that function in place of a single outer membrane DRP, Fzo1 in yeast. We addressed the significance of two mammalian outer membrane fusion DRPs using an in vitro mammalian mitochondrial fusion assay. We demonstrate that heterotypic MFN1-MFN2 trans complexes possess greater efficacy in fusion as compared to homotypic MFN1 or MFN2 complexes. In addition, we show that the soluble form of the proapoptotic Bcl2 protein, Bax, positively regulates mitochondrial fusion exclusively through homotypic MFN2 trans complexes. Together, these data demonstrate functional and regulatory distinctions between MFN1 and MFN2 and provide insight into their unique physiological roles.
  • Conformational Conversion during Amyloid Formation at Atomic Resolution
    - mol cell 41(2):161-172 (2011)
    Numerous studies of amyloid assembly have indicated that partially folded protein species are responsible for initiating aggregation. Despite their importance, the structural and dynamic features of amyloidogenic intermediates and the molecular details of how they cause aggregation remain elusive. Here, we use ΔN6, a truncation variant of the naturally amyloidogenic protein β2-microglobulin (β2m), to determine the solution structure of a nonnative amyloidogenic intermediate at high resolution. The structure of ΔN6 reveals a major repacking of the hydrophobic core to accommodate the nonnative peptidyl-prolyl trans-isomer at Pro32. These structural changes, together with a concomitant pH-dependent enhancement in backbone dynamics on a microsecond-millisecond timescale, give rise to a rare conformer with increased amyloidogenic potential. We further reveal that catalytic amounts of ΔN6 are competent to convert nonamyloidogenic human wild-type β2m (Hβ2m) into a rare! amyloidogenic conformation and provide structural evidence for the mechanism by which this conformational conversion occurs.
  • FKBP12 Binds to Acylated H-Ras and Promotes Depalmitoylation
    - mol cell 41(2):173-185 (2011)
    A cycle of palmitoylation/depalmitoylation of H-Ras mediates bidirectional trafficking between the Golgi apparatus and the plasma membrane, but nothing is known about how this cycle is regulated. We show that the prolyl isomerase (PI) FKBP12 binds to H-Ras in a palmitoylation-dependent fashion and promotes depalmitoylation. A variety of inhibitors of the PI activity of FKBP12, including FK506, rapamycin, and cycloheximide, increase steady-state palmitoylation. FK506 inhibits retrograde trafficking of H-Ras from the plasma membrane to the Golgi in a proline 179-dependent fashion, augments early GTP loading of Ras in response to growth factors, and promotes H-Ras-dependent neurite outgrowth from PC12 cells. These data demonstrate that FKBP12 regulates H-Ras trafficking by promoting depalmitoylation through cis-trans isomerization of a peptidyl-prolyl bond in proximity to the palmitoylated cysteines.
  • Molecular and Structural Basis of ESCRT-III Recruitment to Membranes during Archaeal Cell Division
    - mol cell 41(2):186-196 (2011)
    Members of the crenarchaeal kingdom, such as Sulfolobus, divide by binary fission yet lack genes for the otherwise near-ubiquitous tubulin and actin superfamilies of cytoskeletal proteins. Recent work has established that Sulfolobus homologs of the eukaryotic ESCRT-III and Vps4 components of the ESCRT machinery play an important role in Sulfolobus cell division. In eukaryotes, several pathways recruit ESCRT-III proteins to their sites of action. However, the positioning determinants for archaeal ESCRT-III are not known. Here, we identify a protein, CdvA, that is responsible for recruiting Sulfolobus ESCRT-III to membranes. Overexpression of the isolated ESCRT-III domain that interacts with CdvA results in the generation of nucleoid-free cells. Furthermore, CdvA and ESCRT-III synergize to deform archaeal membranes in vitro. The structure of the CdvA/ESCRT-III interface gives insight into the evolution of the more complex and modular eukaryotic ESCRT complex.
  • Cap-Assisted Internal Initiation of Translation of Histone H4
    - mol cell 41(2):197-209 (2011)
    In eukaryotes, a crucial step of translation initiation is the binding of the multifactor complex eIF4F to the 5′ end of the mRNA, a prerequisite to recruitment of the activated small ribosomal 43S particle. Histone H4 mRNAs have short 5′UTRs, which do not conform to the conventional scanning-initiation model. Here we show that the ORF of histone mRNA contains two structural elements critical for translation initiation. One of the two structures binds eIF4E without the need of the cap. Ribosomal 43S particles become tethered to this site and directly loaded in the vicinity of the AUG. The other structure, 19 nucleotides downstream of the initiation codon, forms a three-way helix junction, which sequesters the m7G cap. This element facilitates direct positioning of the ribosome on the cognate start codon. This unusual translation initiation mode might be considered as a hybrid mechanism between the canonical and the IRES-driven translation initiation process.
  • miR-182-Mediated Downregulation of BRCA1 Impacts DNA Repair and Sensitivity to PARP Inhibitors
    - mol cell 41(2):210-220 (2011)
    Expression of BRCA1 is commonly decreased in sporadic breast tumors, and this correlates with poor prognosis of breast cancer patients. Here we show that BRCA1 transcripts are selectively enriched in the Argonaute/miR-182 complex and miR-182 downregulates BRCA1 expression. Antagonizing miR-182 enhances BRCA1 protein levels and protects them from IR-induced cell death, while overexpressing miR-182 reduces BRCA1 protein, impairs homologous recombination-mediated repair, and render cells hypersensitive to IR. The impaired DNA repair phenotype induced by miR-182 overexpression can be fully rescued by overexpressing miR-182-insensitive BRCA1. Consistent with a BRCA1-deficiency phenotype, miR-182-overexpressing breast tumor cells are hypersensitive to inhibitors of poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase 1 (PARP1). Conversely, antagonizing miR-182 enhances BRCA1 levels and induces resistance to PARP1 inhibitor. Finally, a clinical-grade PARP1 inhibitor impacts outgrowth of miR-182-expr! essing tumors in animal models. Together these results suggest that miR-182-mediated downregulation of BRCA1 impedes DNA repair and may impact breast cancer therapy.
  • Structure of a Preternary Complex Involving a Prokaryotic NHEJ DNA Polymerase
    - mol cell 41(2):221-231 (2011)
    In many prokaryotes, a specific DNA primase/polymerase (PolDom) is required for nonhomologous end joining (NHEJ) repair of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). Here, we report the crystal structure of a catalytically active conformation of Mycobacterium tuberculosis PolDom, consisting of a polymerase bound to a DNA end with a 3′ overhang, two metal ions, and an incoming nucleotide but, significantly, lacking a primer strand. This structure represents a polymerase:DNA complex in a preternary intermediate state. This polymerase complex occurs in solution, stabilizing the enzyme on DNA ends and promoting nucleotide extension of short incoming termini. We also demonstrate that the invariant Arg220, contained in a conserved loop (loop 2), plays an essential role in catalysis by regulating binding of a second metal ion in the active site. We propose that this NHEJ intermediate facilitates extension reactions involving critically short or noncomplementary DNA ends, thus promoti! ng break repair and minimizing sequence loss during DSB repair.
  • Activation-Induced Cytidine Deaminase Induces Reproducible DNA Breaks at Many Non-Ig Loci in Activated B Cells
    - mol cell 41(2):232-242 (2011)
    After immunization or infection, activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID) initiates diversification of immunoglobulin (Ig) genes in B cells, introducing mutations within the antigen-binding V regions (somatic hypermutation, SHM) and double-strand DNA breaks (DSBs) into switch (S) regions, leading to antibody class switch recombination (CSR). We asked if, during B cell activation, AID also induces DNA breaks at genes other than IgH genes. Using a nonbiased genome-wide approach, we have identified hundreds of reproducible, AID-dependent DSBs in mouse splenic B cells shortly after induction of CSR in culture. Most interestingly, AID induces DSBs at sites syntenic with sites of translocations, deletions, and amplifications found in human B cell lymphomas, including within the oncogene B cell lymphoma11a (bcl11a)/evi9. Unlike AID-induced DSBs in Ig genes, genome-wide AID-dependent DSBs are not restricted to transcribed regions and frequently occur within repeated sequenc! e elements, including CA repeats, non-CA tandem repeats, and SINEs.

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