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PLoS One. 2012;7(6):e39258. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0039258. Epub 2012 Jun 21.

Disulphide bridges of phospholipase C of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii modulates lipid interaction and dimer stability.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, University of Delhi, South Campus, New Delhi, India.



Phospholipase C (PLC) is an enzyme that plays pivotal role in a number of signaling cascades. These are active in the plasma membrane and triggers cellular responses by catalyzing the hydrolysis of membrane phospholipids and thereby generating the secondary messengers. Phosphatidylinositol-PLC (PI-PLC) specifically interacts with phosphoinositide and/or phosphoinositol and catalyzes specific cleavage of sn-3- phosphodiester bond. Several isoforms of PLC are known to form and function as dimer but very little is known about the molecular basis of the dimerization and its importance in the lipid interaction.


We herein report that, the disruption of disulphide bond of a novel PI-specific PLC of C. reinhardtii (CrPLC) can modulate its interaction affinity with a set of phospholipids and also the stability of its dimer. CrPLC was found to form a mixture of higher oligomeric states with monomer and dimer as major species. Dimer adduct of CrPLC disappeared in the presence of DTT, which suggested the involvement of disulphide bond(s) in CrPLC oligomerization. Dimer-monomer equilibrium studies with the isolated fractions of CrPLC monomer and dimer supported the involvement of covalent forces in the dimerization of CrPLC. A disulphide bridge was found to be responsible for the dimerization and Cys7 seems to be involved in the formation of the disulphide bond. This crucial disulphide bond also modulated the lipid affinity of CrPLC. Oligomers of CrPLC were also captured in in vivo condition. CrPLC was mainly found to be localized in the plasma membrane of the cell. The cell surface localization of CrPLC may have significant implication in the downstream regulatory function of CrPLC.


This study helps in establishing the role of CrPLC (or similar proteins) in the quaternary structure of the molecule its affinities during lipid interactions.

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