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  • 1.
    Enquist, Karl
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Fransson, Mawritz
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Boekel, Carolina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Bengtsson, Inger
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Geiger, Karin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Lang, Lisa
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Pettersson, Aron
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Johansson, Sofia
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    von Heijne, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Nilsson, IngMarie
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Membrane-integration characteristics of two ABC transporters, CFTR and P-glycoprotein2009In: Journal of Molecular Biology, ISSN 0022-2836, E-ISSN 1089-8638, Vol. 387, no 5, p. 1153-1164Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    To what extent do corresponding transmembrane helices in related integral membrane proteins have different membrane-insertion characteristics? Here, we compare, side-by-side, the membrane insertion characteristics of the 12 transmembrane helices in the adenosine triphosphate-binding cassette (ABC) transporters, P-glycoprotein (P-gp) and the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR). Our results show that 10 of the 12 CFTR transmembrane segments can insert independently into the ER membrane. In contrast, only three of the P-gp transmembrane segments are independently stable in the membrane, while the majority depend on the presence of neighboring loops and/or transmembrane segments for efficient insertion. Membrane-insertion characteristics can thus vary widely between related proteins.

  • 2. Gadalla, Salah-Eldin
    et al.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Lara Vasquez, Patricia
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Nilsson, IngMarie
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Ericsson, Christer
    Zhao, Jian
    Nister, Monica
    EpCAM associates with endoplasmic reticulum aminopeptidase 2 (ERAP2) in breast cancer cells2013In: Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications - BBRC, ISSN 0006-291X, E-ISSN 1090-2104, Vol. 439, no 2, p. 203-208Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) is an epithelial and cancer cell marker and there is a cumulative and growing evidence of its signaling role. Its importance has been recognized as part of the breast cancer stem cell phenotype, the tumorigenic breast cancer stem cell is EpCAM(+). In spite of its complex functions in normal cell development and cancer, relatively little is known about EpCAM-interacting proteins. We used breast cancer cell lines and performed EpCAM co-immunoprecipitation followed by mass spectrometry in search for novel potentially interacting proteins. The endoplasmic reticulum aminopeptidase 2 (ERAP2) was found to co-precipitate with EpCAM and to co-localize in the cytoplasm/ER and the plasma membrane. ERAP2 is a proteolytic enzyme set in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) where it plays a central role in the trimming of peptides for presentation by MHC class I molecules. Expression of EpCAM and ERAP2 in vitro in the presence of dog pancreas rough microsomes (ER vesicles) confirmed N-linked glycosylation, processing in ER and the size of EpCAM. The association between ERAP2 and EpCAM is a unique and novel finding that provides new ideas on EpCAM processing and on how antigen presentation may be regulated in cancer.

  • 3.
    Hedin, Linnea E.
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Bernsel, Andreas
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Hennerdal, Aron
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Illergård, Kristoffer
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Enquist, Karl
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Kauko, Anni
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Cristobal, Susana
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    von Heijne, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Lerch-Bader, Mirjam
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Nilsson, IngMarie
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Elofsson, Arne
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Membrane Insertion of Marginally Hydrophobic Transmembrane Helices Depends on Sequence Context2010In: Journal of Molecular Biology, ISSN 0022-2836, E-ISSN 1089-8638, Vol. 396, no 1, p. 221-229Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In mammalian cells, most integral membrane proteins are initially inserted into the endoplasmic reticulum membrane by the so-called Sec61 translocon. However, recent predictions suggest that many transmembrane helices (TMHs) in multispanning membrane proteins are not sufficiently hydrophobic to be recognized as such by the translocon. In this study, we have screened 16 marginally hydrophobic TMHs from membrane proteins of known three-dimensional structure. Indeed, most of these TMHs do not insert efficiently into the endoplasmic reticulum membrane by themselves. To test if loops or TMHs immediately upstream or downstream of a marginally hydrophobic helix might influence the insertion efficiency, insertion of marginally hydrophobic helices was also studied in the presence of their neighboring loops and helices. The results show that flanking loops and nearest-neighbor TMHs are sufficient to ensure the insertion of many marginally hydrophobic helices. However, for at least two of the marginally hydrophobic helices, the local interactions are not enough, indicating that post-insertional rearrangements are involved in the folding of these proteins.

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  • 4. Vargas-Uribe, Mauricio
    et al.
    Rodnin, Mykola V.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Holgado, Aurora
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Kyrychenko, Alexander
    Nilsson, IngMarie
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Posokhov, Yevgen O.
    Makhatadze, George
    von Heijne, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Ladokhin, Alexey S.
    Thermodynamics of Membrane Insertion and Refolding of the Diphtheria Toxin T-Domain2015In: Journal of Membrane Biology, ISSN 0022-2631, E-ISSN 1432-1424, Vol. 248, no 3, p. 383-394Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The diphtheria toxin translocation (T) domain inserts into the endosomal membrane in response to the endosomal acidification and enables the delivery of the catalytic domain into the cell. The insertion pathway consists of a series of conformational changes that occur in solution and in the membrane and leads to the conversion of a water-soluble state into a transmembrane state. In this work, we utilize various biophysical techniques to characterize the insertion pathway from the thermodynamic perspective. Thermal and chemical unfolding measured by differential scanning calorimetry, circular dichroism, and tryptophan fluorescence reveal that the free energy of unfolding of the T-domain at neutral and mildly acidic pH differ by 3-5 kcal/mol, depending on the experimental conditions. Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy measurements show that the free energy change from the membrane-competent state to the interfacial state is approximately -8 kcal/mol and is pH-independent, while that from the membrane-competent state to the transmembrane state ranges between -9.5 and -12 kcal/mol, depending on the membrane lipid composition and pH. Finally, the thermodynamics of transmembrane insertion of individual helices was tested using an in vitro assay that measures the translocon-assisted integration of test sequences into the microsomal membrane. These experiments suggest that even the most hydrophobic helix TH8 has only a small favorable free energy of insertion. The free energy for the insertion of the consensus insertion unit TH8-TH9 is slightly more favorable, yet less favorable than that measured for the entire protein, suggesting a cooperative effect for the membrane insertion of the helices of the T-domain.

  • 5. Wanngren, Johanna
    et al.
    Lara Vasques, Patricia
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Maioli, Silvia
    Moradi, Nasim
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Chen, Lu
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Tjernberg, Lars O.
    Lundkvist, Johan
    Nilsson, IngMarie
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Karlström, Helena
    Changed membrane integration and catalytic site conformation are two mechanisms behind the increased Aβ42/Aβ40 ratio by presenilin 1 familial Alzheimer-linked mutations.2014In: FEBS Open Bio, E-ISSN 2211-5463, Vol. 4, p. 393-406Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The enzyme complex γ-secretase generates amyloid β-peptide (Aβ), a 37-43-residue peptide associated with Alzheimer disease (AD). Mutations in presenilin 1 (PS1), the catalytical subunit of γ-secretase, result in familial AD (FAD). A unifying theme among FAD mutations is an alteration in the ratio Aβ species produced (the Aβ42/Aβ40 ratio), but the molecular mechanisms responsible remain elusive. In this report we have studied the impact of several different PS1 FAD mutations on the integration of selected PS1 transmembrane domains and on PS1 active site conformation, and whether any effects translate to a particular amyloid precursor protein (APP) processing phenotype. Most mutations studied caused an increase in the Aβ42/Aβ40 ratio, but via different mechanisms. The mutations that caused a particular large increase in the Aβ42/Aβ40 ratio did also display an impaired APP intracellular domain (AICD) formation and a lower total Aβ production. Interestingly, seven mutations close to the catalytic site caused a severely impaired integration of proximal transmembrane/hydrophobic sequences into the membrane. This structural defect did not correlate to a particular APP processing phenotype. Six selected FAD mutations, all of which exhibited different APP processing profiles and impact on PS1 transmembrane domain integration, were found to display an altered active site conformation. Combined, our data suggest that FAD mutations affect the PS1 structure and active site differently, resulting in several complex APP processing phenotypes, where the most aggressive mutations in terms of increased Aβ42/Aβ40 ratio are associated with a decrease in total γ-secretase activity.

  • 6.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Membrane protein topogenesis2015Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The membranes of cells are highly complex and heterogeneous structures that fulfill multiple vital tasks. They form thin barriers that seal out the environment, thus defining the cell’s boundaries. They mediate the selective exchange of information and substances between the inside and outside of cells, thus making cellular life and survival possible and allowing fast adaptation to changing conditions. Not least importantly, they harbor key components of many essential processes such as the photosynthesis and respiration. Membranes are composed of a largely apolar lipid matrix densely punctuated with a large number of different proteins. These so-called membrane proteins usually span the lipid matrix and protrude out into the space on either side of the membrane.

    Over millions of years of evolution, cells have developed an incredible machinery to facilitate the insertion of membrane proteins into the membrane. Our understanding of these machines and the insertion processes they mediate has reached a point where we have a very good picture of membrane protein biogenesis in various types of cells. However, more data still needs to be collected to completely comprehend the complex molecular mechanisms and the physical chemistry that underlies the different insertion processes.

    The work presented in this thesis contributes to that understanding. More precisely, we have studied how weakly hydrophobic transmembrane elements of membrane proteins, which cannot spontaneously enter the largely apolar membrane matrices, are efficiently incorporated. Indeed, such elements are quite common in membrane proteins and our work has lead to the formulation of a novel mechanism for how they can be integrated into biological membranes.

    We have also added to the understanding of the physical chemistry that underlies the membrane insertion process by systematically introducing non-proteinogenic amino acids into a membrane-spanning segment of a membrane protein and studying its membrane insertion capability.

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  • 7.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Calado Botelho, Salomé
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Stüdle, Chiara
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    von Heijne, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics. Stockholm University, Science for Life Laboratory (SciLifeLab).
    Quantitative Analysis of SecYEG-Mediated Insertion of Transmembrane alpha-Helices into the Bacterial Inner Membrane2013In: Journal of Molecular Biology, ISSN 0022-2836, E-ISSN 1089-8638, Vol. 425, no 15, p. 2813-2822Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Most integral membrane proteins, both in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, are co-translationally inserted into the membrane via Sec-type translocons: the SecYEG complex in prokaryotes and the Sec61 complex in eukaryotes. The contributions of individual amino acids to the overall free energy of membrane insertion of single transmembrane alpha-helices have been measured for Sec61-mediated insertion into the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane (Nature 450:1026-1030) but have not been systematically determined for SecYEG-mediated insertion into the bacterial inner membrane. We now report such measurements, carried out in Escherichia coli. Overall, there is a good correlation between the results found for the mammalian ER and the E. coli inner membrane, but the hydrophobicity threshold for SecYEG-mediated insertion is distinctly lower than that for Sec61-mediated insertion.

  • 8.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Halling, Katrin K.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Nilsson, IngMarie
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    von Heijne, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics. Stockholm University, Science for Life Laboratory (SciLifeLab).
    Orientational Preferences of Neighboring Helices Can Drive ER Insertion of a Marginally Hydrophobic Transmembrane Helix2012In: Molecular Cell, ISSN 1097-2765, E-ISSN 1097-4164, Vol. 45, no 4, p. 529-540Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    alpha-helical integral membrane proteins critically depend on the correct insertion of their transmembrane alpha helices into the lipid bilayer for proper folding, yet a surprisingly large fraction of the transmembrane alpha helices in multispanning integral membrane proteins are not sufficiently hydrophobic to insert into the target membrane by themselves. How can such marginally hydrophobic segments nevertheless form transmembrane helices in the folded structure? Here, we show that a transmembrane helix with a strong orientational preference (N-cyt-C-lum or N-lum-C-cyt) can both increase and decrease the hydrophobicity threshold for membrane insertion of a neighboring, marginally hydrophobic helix. This effect helps explain the missing hydrophobicity in polytopic membrane proteins.

  • 9.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Higuchi, Takashi
    Jiang, Yang
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Neurochemistry.
    Langel, Ülo
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Neurochemistry.
    Nilsson, IngMarie
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    White, Stephen H.
    Suga, Hiroaki
    von Heijne, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics. Stockholm University, Science for Life Laboratory (SciLifeLab).
    Apolar surface area determines the efficiency of translocon-mediated membrane-protein integration into the endoplasmic reticulum2011In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, ISSN 0027-8424, E-ISSN 1091-6490, Vol. 108, no 31, p. E359-E364Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Integral membrane proteins are integrated cotranslationally into the membrane of the endoplasmic reticulum in a process mediated by the Sec61 translocon. Transmembrane α-helices in a translocating polypeptide chain gain access to the surrounding membrane through a lateral gate in the wall of the translocon channel [van den Berg B, et al. (2004) Nature427:36–44; Zimmer J, et al. (2008) Nature455:936–943; Egea PF, Stroud RM (2010)Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 107:17182–17187]. To clarify the nature of the membrane-integration process, we have measured the insertion efficiency into the endoplasmic reticulum membrane of model hydrophobic segments containing nonproteinogenic aliphatic and aromatic amino acids. We find that an amino acid’s contribution to the apparent free energy of membrane-insertion is directly proportional to the nonpolar accessible surface area of its side chain, as expected for thermodynamic partitioning between aqueous and nonpolar phases. But unlike bulk-phase partitioning, characterized by a nonpolar solvation parameter of 23 cal∕ðmol · Å2Þ, the solvation parameter for transfer from translocon to bilayer is 6 –10 cal∕ðmol · Å2Þ, pointing to important differences between translocon-guided partitioning and simple water-to-membrane partitioning. Our results provide compelling evidence for a termodynamic partitioning model and insights into the physical properties of the translocon.

  • 10.
    Öjemalm, Karin
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    Watson, Helen R.
    Roboti, Peristera
    Cross, Benedict C. S.
    Warwicker, Jim
    von Heijne, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.
    High, Stephen
    Positional editing of transmembrane domains during ion channel assembly2013In: Journal of Cell Science, ISSN 0021-9533, E-ISSN 1477-9137, Vol. 126, no 2, p. 464-472Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The integration of transmembrane (TM)-spanning regions of many channels and ion transporters is potentially compromised by the presence of polar and charged residues required for biological function. Although the two TMs of the ATP-gated ion channel subunit P2X2 each contain charged/polar amino acids, we found that each TM is efficiently membrane inserted when it is analysed in isolation, and uncovered no evidence for cooperativity between these two TMs during P2X2 integration. However, using minimal N-glycosylation distance mapping, we find that the positioning of TM2 in newly synthesized P2X2 monomers is distinct from that seen in subunits of the high-resolution structures of assembled homologous trimers. We conclude that P2X2 monomers are initially synthesised at the endoplasmic reticulum in a distinct conformation, where the extent of the TM-spanning regions is primarily defined by the thermodynamic cost of their membrane integration at the Sec61 translocon. In this model, TM2 of P2X2 subsequently undergoes a process of positional editing within the membrane that correlates with trimerisation of the monomer, a process requiring specific polar/charged residues in both TM1 and TM2. We postulate that the assembly process offsets any energetic cost of relocating TM2, and find evidence that positional editing of TM2 in the acid-sensing ion channel (ASIC1a) is even more pronounced than that observed for P2X2. Taken together, these data further underline the potential complexities involved in accurately predicting TM domains. We propose that the orchestrated repositioning of TM segments during subunit oligomerisation plays an important role in generating the functional architecture of active ion channels, and suggest that the regulation of this underappreciated biosynthetic step may provide an elegant mechanism for maintaining ER homeostasis.

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