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    Escherichia coli and Neisseria gonorrhoeae UvrD helicase unwinds G4 DNA structures.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 15. Epub 2017 Sep 15.
    Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
    G-quadruplex (G4) secondary structures have been implicated in various biological processes including gene expression, DNA replication and telomere maintenance. However, unresolved G4 structures impede replication progression which can lead to generation of DNA double-strand breaks and genome instability. Helicases have been shown to resolve G4 structures to facilitate faithful duplication of the genome. Read More

    Towards a systems approach to human cytochrome P450 ensemble: Interactions between CYP2D6 and CYP2E1 and their functional consequences.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 13. Epub 2017 Sep 13.
    Chemistry, Washington State University, 100 Dairy Road, Pullman, Washington, 99164-4630, United States.
    Functional cross-talk among human drug-metabolizing cytochromes P450 through their association is a topic of emerging importance. Here we studied the interactions of human CYP2D6, a major metabolizer of psychoactive drugs, with one of the most prevalent human P450 enzymes, ethanol-inducible CYP2E1. Detection of P450-P450 interactions was accomplished through luminescence resonance energy transfer (LRET) between labeled proteins incorporated into human liver microsomes and the microsomes of insect cells containing NADPH-cytochrome P450 reductase. Read More

    Bindings of NO, CO, and O2 to multi-functional globin type dehaloperoxidase follow the "sliding scale rule".
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 12. Epub 2017 Sep 12.
    Division of Hematology, University of Texas Medical School at Houston, Internal Medicine & Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Program, Rm. 5.290 6431 Fannin, Houston, 77030, United States
    Dehaloperoxidase-hemoglobin (DHP), a multifunctional globin protein, functions not only as an oxygen carrier as typical globins such as myoglobin, but also as a peroxidase, a mono- and di-oxygenase, peroxygenase, and an oxidase. Kinetics of DHP binding to NO, CO, and O2 were characterized for wild type DHP A and B and the H55D and H55V DHP A mutants. All three gaseous ligands bind to DHP significantly more weakly than sperm whale myoglobin (SWMb). Read More

    Novel endogenous retrovirus-derived transcript expressed in the bovine placenta is regulated by WNT signaling.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 12. Epub 2017 Sep 12.
    the University of Tokyo, Ibaraki, Japan
    Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) are involved in placentation; perhaps the most well-known ERV s are the syncytins, actively transcribed env genes involved in cell-cell fusion and possible morphological variations. However, ERVs other than syncytins that play an important role in placental development have not been well characterized. To identify ERV genes expressed during the onset of placentation in the bovine species, we characterized the expression profiles of bovine conceptus transcripts during the peri-attachment period using RNA-seq analysis, and confirming some candidates through real-time PCR. Read More

    The chromatin remodeling Isw1a complex is regulated by SUMOylation.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 12. Epub 2017 Sep 12.
    UMR144, INSERM CNRS, 1 rue Vellefaux, IUH Hopital Saint Louis, Paris, 75010, France
    The ISWI class of proteins consists in a family of chromatin remodeling ATPases that is ubiquitous in eukaryotes and predominantly functions to slide nucleosomes laterally. The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae Isw1 partners with several non-essential alternative subunits-Ioc2, Ioc3, or Ioc4-to form two distinct complexes Isw1a and Isw1b. Besides its ATPase domain, Isw1 presents a C-terminal region formed by HAND, SANT and SLIDE domains responsible for interaction with the Ioc proteins and optimal association of Isw1 to chromatin. Read More

    Trz1, the long form RNase Z from yeast, forms a stable heterohexamer with endonuclease Nuc1 and mutarotase.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 12. Epub 2017 Sep 12.
    I2BC, Université Paris Sud, Orsay, 91405, France
    Proteomic studies haves established that Trz1, Nuc1 and mutarotase form a complex in yeast. Trz1 is a b-lactamase type RNase composed of two b-lactamase type domains connected by a long linker that is responsible for the endonucleolytic cleavage at the 3'-end of tRNAs during the maturation process (RNase Z activity); Nuc1 is a dimeric mitochondrial nuclease involved in apoptosis, while mutarotase (encoded by YMR099C) catalyzes the conversion between the a- and b-configuration of glucose-6-phosphate. Using gel-filtration, SAXS and electron microscopy we demonstrated that Trz1, Nuc1 and mutarotase form a very stable heterohexamer, composed of two copies of each of the three subunits. Read More

    The functions of Reelin in membrane trafficking and cytoskeletal dynamics: implications for neuronal migration, polarization and differentiation.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 7;474(18):3137-3165. Epub 2017 Sep 7.
    Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile
    Reelin is a large extracellular matrix protein with relevant roles in mammalian central nervous system including neurogenesis, neuronal polarization and migration during development; and synaptic plasticity with its implications in learning and memory, in the adult. Dysfunctions in reelin signaling are associated with brain lamination defects such as lissencephaly, but also with neuropsychiatric diseases like autism, schizophrenia and depression as well with neurodegeneration. Reelin signaling involves a core pathway that activates upon reelin binding to its receptors, particularly ApoER2 (apolipoprotein E receptor 2)/LRP8 (low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 8) and very low-density lipoprotein receptor, followed by Src/Fyn-mediated phosphorylation of the adaptor protein Dab1 (Disabled-1). Read More

    Constitutive activation of p46JNK2 is indispensable for C/EBPdelta induction in the initial stage of adipogenic differentiation.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 8. Epub 2017 Sep 8.
    Kagoshima University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Kagoshima, N/A, Japan
    Adipogenic differentiation plays a vital role in energy homeostasis and endocrine system. Several transcription factors including peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ 2 (PPARγ2), CCAAT-enhancer-binding protein (C/EBP) α, β, and δ are important for the process, whereas the stage-specific intracellular signal transduction regulating the onset of adipogenesis remains enigmatic. Here, we explored the functional role of c- jun N-terminal kinases (JNKs) in adipogenic differentiation using in vitro differentiation models of 3T3-L1 cells and primary adipo-progenitor cells. Read More

    AtSPX1 affects the AtPHR1 -DNA binding equilibrium by binding monomeric AtPHR1 in solution.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 8. Epub 2017 Sep 8.
    Centre for Plant Sciences, University of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, LS2 9JT, United Kingdom
    Phosphorus is an essential macronutrient for plant growth, and is deficient in about 50% of agricultural soils. The transcription factor Phosphate Starvation Response 1 (PHR1) plays a central role in regulating the expression of a subset of Phosphate Starvation Induced (PSI) genes through binding to a cis acting DNA element termed P1BS. In Arabidopsis and rice, activity of AtPHR1/OsPHR2 is regulated in part by their downstream target SPX proteins through protein-protein interaction. Read More

    Post-translational modification of the interferon gamma receptor alters its stability and signaling.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 7. Epub 2017 Sep 7.
    Acute Lung Injury Center of Excellence, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, UPMC Montefiore,NW 628, 3459 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, 15213, United States
    The IFN gamma receptor 1 (IFNGR1) binds IFN gamma and activates gene transcription pathways crucial for controlling bacterial and viral infections. Although decreases in IFNGR1 surface levels have been demonstrated to inhibit IFN gamma signaling, little is known regarding the molecular mechanisms controlling receptor stability. Here we show in epithelial and monocytic cell lines that IFNGR1 displays K48 polyubiquitination, is proteasomally degraded, and harbors three ubiquitin acceptor sites at K277, K279, and K285. Read More

    Human TorsinA can function in the yeast cytosol as a molecular chaperone.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 4. Epub 2017 Sep 4.
    School of Biosciences, University of Kent, Stacey Building, Canterbury, CT2 7NJ, United Kingdom
    TorsinA (TorA) is an AAA+ ATPAse linked to dystonia type 1 (DYT1), a neurological disorder that leads to uncontrollable muscular movements. Although DYT1 is linked to a 3bp deletion in the C terminus of TorA, the biological function of TorA remains to be established. Here we use the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a tractable in vivo model to explore TorA function. Read More

    The coproporphyrin ferrochelatase of Staphylococcus aureus : mechanistic insights into a regulatory iron binding site.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 1. Epub 2017 Sep 1.
    University of Kent, Canterbury, United Kingdom
    The majority of characterised ferrochelatase enzymes catalyse the final step of classical haem synthesis, inserting ferrous iron into protoporphyrin IX. However, for the recently-discovered coproporphyrin-dependent pathway, ferrochelatase catalyses the penultimate reaction where ferrous iron is inserted into coproporphyrin III. Ferrochelatase enzymes from the bacterial phyla Firmicutes and Actinobacteria have previously been shown to insert iron into coproporphyrin, and those from Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus aureus are known to be inhibited by elevated iron concentrations. Read More

    Expression of an RNA glycosidase inhibits HIV-1 transactivation of transcription.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 1. Epub 2017 Sep 1.
    Department of Biology, York University, 4700 Keele St., Toronto, M3J 1P3, Canada
    HIV-1 transcription is primarily controlled by the virally encoded Tat protein and its interaction with the viral TAR RNA element. Specifically, binding of a Tat-containing complex to TAR recruits cellular factors that promote elongation of the host RNA polymerase engaging the viral DNA template. Disruption of this interaction halts viral RNA transcription. Read More

    From B to A: making an essential cofactor in a human parasite.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 30;474(18):3089-3092. Epub 2017 Aug 30.
    Departments of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, University of California Irvine, Irvine, CA 92697, U.S.A.
    Trypanosomatids are parasitic eukaryotic organisms that cause human disease. These organisms have complex lifestyles; cycling between vertebrate and insect hosts and alternating between two morphologies; a replicating form and an infective, nonreplicating one. Because trypanosomatids are one of the few organisms that do not synthesize the essential cofactor, heme, these parasites sequester the most common form, heme B, from their hosts. Read More

    A ligand divided: antagonist, agonist and analog control.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 30;474(18):3087-3088. Epub 2017 Aug 30.
    Department of Pharmacology, Yale Cancer Biology Institute, Yale University School of Medicine, West Haven, CT 06516, U.S.A.
    Inhibiting receptor tyrosine kinases has been a cornerstone of cancer therapeutics for decades. Treatment strategies largely involve small-molecule kinase inhibitors and monoclonal antibodies. For receptors activated by constitutively dimeric ligands, another potential mechanism of inhibition exists: developing monomeric ligands that prevent receptor dimerization. Read More

    Activation mechanisms of the E3 ubiquitin ligase parkin.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 30;474(18):3075-3086. Epub 2017 Aug 30.
    Neuroregeneration and Stem Cell Programs, Institute for Cell Engineering, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205, U.S.A.
    Monogenetic, familial forms of Parkinson's disease (PD) only account for 5-10% of the total number of PD cases, but analysis of the genes involved therein is invaluable to understanding PD-associated neurodegenerative signaling. One such gene, parkin, encodes a 465 amino acid E3 ubiquitin ligase. Of late, there has been considerable interest in the role of parkin signaling in PD and in identifying its putative substrates, as well as the elucidation of the mechanisms through which parkin itself is activated. Read More

    Structural Insights into the Substrate Specificity of a Glycoside Hydrolase Family 5 Lichenase from Caldicellulosiruptor sp. F32.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 24. Epub 2017 Aug 24.
    Qingdao Institute of Bioenergy and Bioprocess Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, No. 189 Songling Road, Qingdao, N/A, 266101, China.
    Glycoside hydrolase (GH) family 5 is one of the largest GH families with various GH activities including lichenase, but the structural basis of the GH5 lichenase activity is still unknown. A novel thermostable lichenase F32EG5 belonging to GH5 was identified from an extremely thermophilic bacterium Caldicellulosiruptor  sp. F32. Read More

    Nitric oxide stimulates cellular degradation of human CYP51A1, the highly conserved lanosterol 14α-demethylase.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 14;474(19):3241-3252. Epub 2017 Sep 14.
    Department of Pharmacology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, U.S.A.
    Nitric oxide (NO) is known to down-regulate drug-metabolizing cytochrome P450 enzymes in an enzyme-selective manner. Ubiquitin-proteasome-dependent and -independent pathways have been reported. Here, we studied the regulation of expression of human CYP51A1, the lanosterol 14α-demethylase required for synthesis of cholesterol and other sterols in mammals, which is found in every kingdom of life. Read More

    A novel image-based high throughput screening assay discovers therapeutic candidates for adult polyglucosan body disease.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 1. Epub 2017 Sep 1.
    Neurology, Hadassah Medical Organization, Ein Kerem, Jerusalem, 91120, Israel
    Glycogen storage disorders (GSDs) are caused by excessive accumulation of glycogen. Some GSDs (Adult Polyglucosan Body Disease (APBD), Tarui and Lafora diseases) are caused by intracellular accumulation of insoluble inclusions, called polyglucosan bodies (PB), which are chiefly composed of malconstructed glycogen. We developed an APBD patient skin fibroblast cell-based assay for PB identification, where the bodies are identified as amylase-resistant periodic acid-Schiff's (PAS) stained structures, and quantified. Read More

    Munc18a Clusters SNARE-Bearing Liposomes Prior to Trans-SNARE Zippering.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 21. Epub 2017 Aug 21.
    Biological Sciences, University of southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, Mississippi, 39406, United States
    Sec1-Munc18 (SM) proteins cooperate with SNAREs {SNAP [soluble NSF (N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor) attachment protein] receptors} to mediate membrane fusion in eukaryotic cells. Studies of Munc18a/Munc18-1/Stxbp1 in neurotransmission suggest that SM proteins accelerate fusion kinetics primarily by activating the partially zippered trans-SNARE complex. However, accumulating evidence has argued for additional roles for SM proteins in earlier steps in the fusion cascade. Read More

    New insight on the S100A1-STIP1 complex highlights the important relationship between allostery and entropy in protein function.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 17;474(17):2977-2980. Epub 2017 Aug 17.
    Department of Physics and Astronomy, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences, Rowan University, 201 Mullica Hill Road, Glassboro, NJ 08028, U.S.A.
    Calcium signaling serves as a nexus of many vital cellular processes. Of particular importance is the role the calcium signaling plays in the prevention of protein misfolding, and the S100 family of calcium-binding proteins is a key player in this pathway. While the S100 proteins carry out a range of roles, the interaction of S100A1 and the stress-inducible phosphoprotein 1 (STIP1) has been shown to be particularly important. Read More

    The AAA+ ATPase p97, a cellular multitool.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 17;474(17):2953-2976. Epub 2017 Aug 17.
    Section of Structural Biology, Department of Medicine, Imperial College London, London, U.K.
    The AAA+ (ATPases associated with diverse cellular activities) ATPase p97 is essential to a wide range of cellular functions, including endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation, membrane fusion, NF-κB (nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells) activation and chromatin-associated processes, which are regulated by ubiquitination. p97 acts downstream from ubiquitin signaling events and utilizes the energy from ATP hydrolysis to extract its substrate proteins from cellular structures or multiprotein complexes. A multitude of p97 cofactors have evolved which are essential to p97 function. Read More

    Genetic human prion disease modelled in PrP transgenic Drosophila.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 16. Epub 2017 Aug 16.
    Department of Veterinary Medicine, University of Cambridge, Madingley Road, CAMBRIDGE, CB3 OES, United Kingdom
    Inherited human prion diseases, such as FFI and familial CJD (fCJD), are associated with autosomal dominant mutations in the human prion protein gene PRNP and accumulation of PrPSc, an abnormal isomer of the normal host protein PrPC, in the brain of affected individuals. PrPSc is the principal component of the transmissible neurotoxic prion agent. It is important to identify molecular pathways and cellular processes that regulate prion formation and prion-induced neurotoxicity. Read More

    Identification of drivers for the metamorphic transition of HIV-1 reverse transcriptase.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 15. Epub 2017 Aug 15.
    Genome Integrity and Structural Biology Laboratory, NIEHS/NIH, MR-01, 111 T.W. Alexander Drive, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, 27709, United States
    Recent structural characterizations of the p51 and p66 monomers has established an important starting point for understanding the maturation pathway of the HIV-1 reverse transcriptase p66/p51 heterodimer. This process requires a metamorphic transition of the polymerase domain leading to formation of a p66/p66' homodimer that exists as a structural heterodimer. In order to better understand the drivers for this metamorphic transition, we have performed NMR studies of (15)N-labeled RT216 - a construct that includes the fingers and most of the palm domains. Read More

    The role of interactions of long non-coding RNAs and heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoproteins in regulating cellular functions.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 11;474(17):2925-2935. Epub 2017 Aug 11.
    Department of Biochemistry, University of Nebraska - Lincoln, Lincoln, Nebraska 68588, U.S.A.
    Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are emerging as critical regulators of various biological processes and human diseases. The mechanisms of action involve their interactions with proteins, RNA and genomic DNA. Most lncRNAs display strong nuclear localization. Read More

    Phosphatases and solid tumors: focus on glioblastoma initiation, progression and recurrences.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 11;474(17):2903-2924. Epub 2017 Aug 11.
    Laboratory of Nervous System Disorders and Therapy, GIGA-Neurosciences Research Center, University of Liège, Liège, Belgium
    Phosphatases and cancer have been related for many years now, as these enzymes regulate key cellular functions, including cell survival, migration, differentiation and proliferation. Dysfunctions or mutations affecting these enzymes have been demonstrated to be key factors for oncogenesis. The aim of this review is to shed light on the role of four different phosphatases (PTEN, PP2A, CDC25 and DUSP1) in five different solid tumors (breast cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer and ovarian cancer), in order to better understand the most frequent and aggressive primary cancer of the central nervous system, glioblastoma. Read More

    Protein CoAlation: a redox-linked post-translational modification.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 10;474(16):2897-2899. Epub 2017 Aug 10.
    The Francis Crick Institute, London, U.K.
    Regulation of metabolic pathways by signal transduction and transcriptional cascades can alter cellular levels of metabolites. Metabolites themselves can also have regulatory activity as shown in a new study published in the Biochemical Journal Tsuchiya et al. describe a novel antibody and mass spectrometry-based method for identifying proteins that are reversibly modified with Coenzyme A (CoA). Read More

    As-CATH1-6, novel cathelicidins with potent antimicrobial and immunomodulatory properties from Alligator sinensis, play pivotal roles in host antimicrobial immune responses.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 10;474(16):2861-2885. Epub 2017 Aug 10.
    Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Soochow University, Suzhou, Jiangsu 215123, China
    Crocodilians are regarded as possessing a powerful immune system. However, the composition and action of the crocodilian immune system have remained unclear until now. Cathelicidins, the principal family of host defense peptides, play pivotal roles in vertebrate immune defense against microbial invasions. Read More

    Activation of tissue plasminogen activator by metastasis-inducing S100P protein.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 12;474(19):3227-3240. Epub 2017 Sep 12.
    Institute of Integrative Biology, University of Liverpool, Biosciences Building, Crown Street, Liverpool L69 7ZB, U.K.
    S100P protein in human breast cancer cells is associated with reduced patient survival and, in a model system of metastasis, it confers a metastatic phenotype upon benign mammary tumour cells. S100P protein possesses a C-terminal lysine residue. Using a multiwell in vitro assay, S100P is now shown for the first time to exhibit a strong, C-terminal lysine-dependent activation of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA), but not of urokinase-catalysed plasminogen activation. Read More

    The role of mass spectrometry analysis in bacterial effector characterization.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 7;474(16):2779-2784. Epub 2017 Aug 7.
    Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Melbourne at the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, Melbourne 3000, Australia
    Many secreted bacterial effector proteins play a critical role in host-pathogen interactions by mediating a variety of post-translational modifications, some of which do not occur natively within the eukaryotic proteome. The characterization of bacterial effector protein activity remains an important step to understanding the subversion of host cell biology during pathogen infection and although molecular biology and immunochemistry remain critical tools for gaining insights into bacterial effector functions, increasingly mass spectrometry (MS) and proteomic approaches are also playing an indispensable role. The focus of this editorial is to highlight the strengths of specific MS approaches and their utility for the characterization of bacterial effector activity. Read More

    IgG light chain-independent secretion of heavy chain dimers: consequence for therapeutic antibody production and design.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 7;474(18):3179-3188. Epub 2017 Sep 7.
    Institute of Molecular, Cell and Systems Biology, CMVLS, University of Glasgow, Davidson Building, Glasgow G12 8QQ, U.K.
    Rodent monoclonal antibodies with specificity towards important biological targets are developed for therapeutic use by a process of humanisation. This process involves the creation of molecules, which retain the specificity of the rodent antibody but contain predominantly human coding sequence. Here, we show that some humanised heavy chains (HCs) can fold, form dimers and be secreted even in the absence of a light chain (LC). Read More

    Central catalytic domain of BRAP (RNF52) recognizes the types of ubiquitin chains and utilizes oligo-ubiquitin for ubiquitylation.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 7;474(18):3207-3226. Epub 2017 Sep 7.
    Division of Structural and Synthetic Biology, RIKEN Center for Life Science Technologies, 1-7-22 Suehiro-cho, Tsurumi-ku, Yokohama 230-0045, Japan
    Really interesting new gene (RING)-finger protein 52 (RNF52), an E3 ubiquitin ligase, is found in eukaryotes from yeast to humans. Human RNF52 is known as breast cancer type 1 susceptibility protein (BRCA1)-associated protein 2 (BRAP or BRAP2). The central catalytic domain of BRAP comprises four subdomains: nucleotide-binding α/β plait (NBP), really interesting new gene (RING) zinc finger, ubiquitin-specific protease (UBP)-like zinc finger (ZfUBP), and coiled-coil (CC). Read More

    A meta-analysis and review examining a possible role for oxidative stress and singlet oxygen in diverse diseases.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 2;474(16):2713-2731. Epub 2017 Aug 2.
    Laboratory of Inorganic Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, University of Athens, Panepistimiopolis, Athens 15771, Greece.
    From kinetic data (k, T) we calculated the thermodynamic parameters for various processes (nucleation, elongation, fibrillization, etc.) of proteinaceous diseases that are related to the β-amyloid protein (Alzheimer's), to tau protein (Alzheimer's, Pick's), to α-synuclein (Parkinson's), prion, amylin (type II diabetes), and to α-crystallin (cataract). Our calculations led to ΔG(≠) values that vary in the range 92. Read More

    Structural evidence of a phosphoinositide binding site in the Rgd1-RhoGAP domain.
    Biochem J 2017 07 31. Epub 2017 Jul 31.
    CBMN UMR5248, CNRS, Allée Geoffroy Saint Hilaire, Université Bordeaux, Pessac, N/A, 33615, France
    Phosphoinositide lipids recruit proteins to the plasma membrane involved in the regulation of cytoskeleton organization and in signalling pathways that control cell polarity and growth. Among those, Rgd1p is a yeast GTPase activating protein (GAP) specific for Rho3p and Rho4p GTPases, which control actin polymerization and stress signalling pathways. Phosphoinositides not only bind Rgd1p, but also stimulate its GAP activity on the membrane-anchored form of Rho4p. Read More

    Intrinsic disorder in the partitioning protein KorB persists after co-operative complex formation with operator DNA and KorA.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 30;474(18):3121-3135. Epub 2017 Aug 30.
    School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, Leicestershire LE12 5RD, U.K.
    The ParB protein, KorB, from the RK2 plasmid is required for DNA partitioning and transcriptional repression. It acts co-operatively with other proteins, including the repressor KorA. Like many multifunctional proteins, KorB contains regions of intrinsically disordered structure, existing in a large ensemble of interconverting conformations. Read More

    Novel targeted therapies for cancer cachexia.
    Biochem J 2017 Jul 27;474(16):2663-2678. Epub 2017 Jul 27.
    Cancer Research Group, Departament de Bioquímica i Biomedicina Molecular, Facultat de Biologia, Universitat de Barcelona, Diagonal 643, Barcelona 08028, Spain.
    Anorexia and metabolic alterations are the main components of the cachectic syndrome. Glucose intolerance, fat depletion, muscle protein catabolism and other alterations are involved in the development of cancer cachexia, a multi-organ syndrome. Nutritional approach strategies are not satisfactory in reversing the cachectic syndrome. Read More

    Cross-talk of Brassinosteroid signaling in controlling growth and stress responses.
    Biochem J 2017 Jul 27;474(16):2641-2661. Epub 2017 Jul 27.
    Department of Genetics, Development and Cell Biology, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, U.S.A.
    Plants are faced with a barrage of stresses in their environment and must constantly balance their growth and survival. As such, plants have evolved complex control systems that perceive and respond to external and internal stimuli in order to optimize these responses, many of which are mediated by signaling molecules such as phytohormones. One such class of molecules called Brassinosteroids (BRs) are an important group of plant steroid hormones involved in numerous aspects of plant life including growth, development and response to various stresses. Read More

    Agmatine: multifunctional arginine metabolite and magic bullet in clinical neuroscience?
    Biochem J 2017 Jul 26;474(15):2619-2640. Epub 2017 Jul 26.
    Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy Medical Faculty, University of Magdeburg, Magdeburg, Germany.
    Agmatine, the decarboxylation product of arginine, was largely neglected as an important player in mammalian metabolism until the mid-1990s, when it was re-discovered as an endogenous ligand of imidazoline and α2-adrenergic receptors. Since then, a wide variety of agmatine-mediated effects have been observed, and consequently agmatine has moved from a wallflower existence into the limelight of clinical neuroscience research. Despite this quantum jump in scientific interest, the understanding of the anabolism and catabolism of this amine is still vague. Read More

    MinD directly interacting with FtsZ at the H10 helix suggests a model for robust activation of MinC to destabilize FtsZ polymers.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 7;474(18):3189-3205. Epub 2017 Sep 7.
    Institute of Life Sciences, Nalco Square, Bhubaneswar, Odisha 751023, India
    Cell division in bacteria is a highly controlled and regulated process. FtsZ, a bacterial cytoskeletal protein, forms a ring-like structure known as the Z-ring and recruits more than a dozen other cell division proteins. The Min system oscillates between the poles and inhibits the Z-ring formation at the poles by perturbing FtsZ assembly. Read More

    Loss of prion protein is associated with the development of insulin resistance and obesity.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 17;474(17):2981-2991. Epub 2017 Aug 17.
    Internacional Research Center, AC Camargo Cancer Center, São Paulo, Brazil
    Prion protein (PrP(C)) was initially described due to its involvement in transmissible spongiform encephalopathies. It was subsequently demonstrated to be a cell surface molecule involved in many physiological processes, such as vesicle trafficking. Here, we investigated the roles of PrP(C) in the response to insulin and obesity development. Read More

    Buddleja thyrsoides Lam. crude extract presents antinociceptive effect on an arthritic pain model in mice.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 17;474(17):2993-3010. Epub 2017 Aug 17.
    Neurotoxicity and Psychopharmacology Laboratory, Center of Natural and Exact Sciences, Federal University of Santa Maria, Santa Maria, RS, Brazil
    Arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease which reduces the life quality of affected individuals. Therapeutic tools used for treating inflammatory pain are associated with several undesirable effects. Buddleja thyrsoides Lam. Read More

    N-Glycosylation is required for FDNC5 stabilization and irisin secretion.
    Biochem J 2017 Sep 7;474(18):3167-3177. Epub 2017 Sep 7.
    The Key Laboratory of China Education Ministry for Research of Mammal Reproductive Biology and Biotechnology, School of Life Sciences, Inner Mongolia University, Hohhot 010020, China
    Irisin, a myokine derived from the extracellular domain of FNDC5, has been shown to mediate thermogenesis of white adipose tissue. Biochemical data have shown that N-glycosylation of FNDC5 is unlikely to affect ligand or receptor activation of irisin. The N-glycosylation of FNDC5 remains poorly understood. Read More

    The helicase, DDX3X, interacts with poly(A)-binding protein 1 (PABP1) and caprin-1 at the leading edge of migrating fibroblasts and is required for efficient cell spreading.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 30;474(18):3109-3120. Epub 2017 Aug 30.
    Department of Biochemistry, School of Life Sciences, University of Sussex, Brighton BN1 6SE, U.K.
    DDX3X, a helicase, can interact directly with mRNA and translation initiation factors, regulating the selective translation of mRNAs that contain a structured 5' untranslated region. This activity modulates the expression of mRNAs controlling cell cycle progression and mRNAs regulating actin dynamics, contributing to cell adhesion and motility. Previously, we have shown that ribosomes and translation initiation factors localise to the leading edge of migrating fibroblasts in loci enriched with actively translating ribosomes, thereby promoting steady-state levels of ArpC2 and Rac1 proteins at the leading edge of cells during spreading. Read More

    The antifungal activity of the peptide, periplanetasin-2, derived from American cockroach Periplaneta americana.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 22;474(17):3027-3043. Epub 2017 Aug 22.
    School of Life Sciences, BK 21 Plus KNU Creative BioResearch Group, College of Natural Sciences, Kyungpook National University, 80 Daehakro, Bukgu, Daegu 41566, Republic of Korea
    The cockroach, which is a household insect, is an established model organism in research. Periplanetasin-2, derived from the American cockroach Periplaneta americana, exerted potent antifungal effect against pathogenic fungi without causing hemolysis. Periplanetasin-2 induced oxidative stress by generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and lipid peroxidation. Read More

    Sialylated glycosylphosphatidylinositols suppress the production of toxic amyloid-β oligomers.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 22;474(17):3045-3058. Epub 2017 Aug 22.
    Department of Pathology and Pathogen Biology, Royal Veterinary College, Hawkshead Lane, North Mymms, Herts AL9 7TA, U.K.
    The production of amyloid-β (Aβ) is a key factor driving pathogenesis in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Increasing concentrations of soluble Aβ oligomers within the brain lead to synapse degeneration and the progressive dementia characteristic of AD. Since Aβ exists in both disease-relevant (toxic) and non-toxic forms, the factors that affected the release of toxic Aβ were studied in a cell model. Read More

    Glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase 2 is essential for normal spermatogenesis.
    Biochem J 2017 Aug 30;474(18):3093-3107. Epub 2017 Aug 30.
    Instituto de Investigaciones Bioquímicas de La Plata 'Rodolfo R. Brenner', Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, Facultad de Ciencias Médicas, Universidad Nacional de La Plata, La Plata 1900, Argentina
    Glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferases (GPATs) catalyze the first and rate-limiting step in the de novo glycerolipid synthesis. The GPAT2 isoform differs from the other isoforms because its expression is restricted to male germ cells and cancer cells. It has been recently reported that GPAT2 expression in mouse testis fluctuates during sexual maturation and that it is regulated by epigenetic mechanisms in combination with vitamin A derivatives. Read More

    A strictly monofunctional bacterial hydroxymethylpyrimidine phosphate kinase precludes damaging errors in thiamin biosynthesis.
    Biochem J 2017 Jul 20. Epub 2017 Jul 20.
    Horticultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, FL 32611-0690, United States
    The canonical kinase (ThiD) that converts the thiamin biosynthesis intermediate hydroxymethylpyrimidine (HMP) monophosphate to the diphosphate can also very efficiently convert free HMP to the monophosphate in prokaryotes, plants, and fungi. This HMP kinase activity enables salvage of HMP, but it is not substrate-specific and so allows toxic HMP analogs and damage products to infiltrate the thiamin biosynthesis pathway. Comparative analysis of bacterial genomes uncovered a gene, thiD2 , that is often fused to the thiamin synthesis gene thiE and could potentially encode a replacement for ThiD. Read More

    As-CATH1~6, novel cathelicidins with potent antimicrobial and immunomodulatory properties from Alligator sinensis, play pivotal roles in host anti-microbial immune responses.
    Biochem J 2017 Jul 18. Epub 2017 Jul 18.
    College of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Soochow University, Suzhou, China
    Crocodilians are regarded as possessing a powerful immune system. However, the composition and action of crocodilian immune system has remained unclear until now. Cathelicidins, the principal family of host defense peptides, play pivotal roles in vertebrate immune defense against microbial invasions. Read More

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