Structural studies of membrane proteins using transmission electron microscopy
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Membrane proteins play important roles for living cells. They control transportation of ions, solutes, and nutrients across the membrane and catalyze metabolic reactions. Transmission electron microscopy has its advantages in convenient sample preparation, straightforward structural determination, and wide applications for diverse specimens. In this thesis, the structure of three membrane proteins are studied by this method.
Kch, a potassium channel in Escherichia coli, has a transmembrane part and a cytosolic domain. Large and well-ordered two dimensional crystals were obtained from both a functional mutant (KchM240L) and a modified protein possessing only the transmembrane part (KchTM). Both samples crystallize as two symmetry-related overlapping layers. Furthermore, the KchTM structure was reconstructed which showed that the transmembrane part of the two adjacent proteins are involved in forming the crystal contacts. Thus, the cytosolic domains of Kch in crystals are deduced to expose to the solvent and do not interact with each other.
MGST1 (microsomal glutathione transferase 1) is a detoxification enzyme. It was recombinantly over-expressed in the current study, instead of purified from rat liver as before. The crystallization condition was adjusted and isomorphic crystals were obtained. The refined model was built from a combined data set consisting of previous and new diffraction patterns. More residues at the C-terminus of the transmembrane helix 1 were assigned and the residues in the transmembrane helices 3 and 4 were remodeled. Several phospholipid molecules were observed and the ligand glutathione adopts an extended conformation in the refined model.
The structure of MelB (a sugar/sodium symporter in Escherichia coli) was determined using a refined single particle reconstruction method. This novel method is aimed for processing small or locally distorted crystals. In comparison with the previously published single particle reconstruction protocol, the current method is improved in several aspects. A more reliable reconstruction of MelB was obtained and the resolution was increased. The docking experiment indicates that MelB adopts an open conformation under the present two dimensional crystallization condition.
Electron microscopy has developed quickly recently with the help of modern instruments, techniques, and software. This method will without doubt play a more critical role in future structural biology.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2015. , viii, 55 p.
TRITA-STH : report, ISSN 1653-3836 ; 2015:1
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-161721ISBN: 978-91-7595-468-4OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-161721DiVA: diva2:795507
2015-04-13, Lecture hall 221, Alfred Nobels Allé 10, Flemingsberg, Huddinge, 09:00 (English)
Vénien-Bryan, Catherine, Professor
Hebert, Hans, Professor
FunderSwedish Research Council
QC 201503202015-03-202015-03-132015-09-11Bibliographically approved
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