- The recent development of mutant-selective inhibitors for the oncogenic KRASG12C allele has generated considerable excitement. These inhibitors covalently engage the mutant C12 thiol located within the phosphoryl binding loop of RAS, locking the KRASG12C protein in an inactive state. While clinical trials of these inhibitors have been promising, mechanistic questions regarding the reactivity of this thiol remain. Here, we show by NMR and an independent biochemical assay that the pKa of the C12 thiol is depressed (pKa ∼7.6), consistent with susceptibility to chemical ligation.
- Ryanodine receptor type 1 (RyR1) releases Ca2+ ions from the sarcoplasmic reticulum of skeletal muscle cells to initiate muscle contraction. Multiple endogenous and exogenous effectors regulate RyR1, such as ATP, Ca2+, caffeine (Caf), and ryanodine. Cryo-EM identified binding sites for the three coactivators Ca2+, ATP, and Caf. However, the mechanism of coregulation and synergy between these activators remains to be determined. Here, we used [3H]ryanodine ligand-binding assays and molecular dynamics simulations to test the hypothesis that both the ATP- and Caf-binding sites communicate with the Ca2+-binding site to sensitize RyR1 to Ca2+.
- Cryo-electron micrograph studies recently have identified a Ca2+-binding site in the 2,200-kDa ryanodine receptor ion channel (RyR1) in skeletal muscle. To clarify the role of this site in regulating RyR1 activity, here we applied mutational, electrophysiological, and computational methods. Three amino acid residues that interact directly with Ca2+ were replaced, and these RyR1 variants were expressed in HEK293 cells. Single-site RyR1-E3893Q, -E3893V, -E3967Q, -E3967V, and -T5001A variants and double-site RyR1-E3893Q/E3967Q and -E3893V/E3967V variants displayed cellular Ca2+ release in response to caffeine, which indicated that they retained functionality as caffeine-sensitive, Ca2+-conducting channels in the HEK293 cell system.
- The ryanodine receptor ion channel RyR1 is present in skeletal muscle and has a large cytoplasmic N-terminal domain and smaller C-terminal pore-forming domain comprising six transmembrane helices, a pore helix, and a selectivity filter. The RyR1 S6 pore-lining helix has two conserved glycines, Gly-4934 and Gly-4941, that facilitate RyR1 channel gating by providing S6 flexibility and minimizing amino acid clashes. Here, we report that substitution of Gly-4941 with Asp or Lys results in functional channels as indicated by caffeine-induced Ca2+ release response in HEK293 cells, whereas a low response of the corresponding Gly-4934 variants suggested loss of function.
- Cholesteryl ester transfer protein (CETP) mediates the transfer of cholesteryl esters (CEs) and triglycerides between different lipoproteins. Recent studies have shown that blocking the function of CETP can increase the level of HDL cholesterol in blood plasma and suppress the risk of cardiovascular disease. Hence, understanding the structure, dynamics, and mechanism by which CETP transfers the neutral lipids has received tremendous attention in last decade. Although the recent crystal structure has provided direct evidence of the existence of strongly bound CEs in the CETP core, very little is known about the mechanism of CE/triglyceride transfer by CETP.