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Biophys J. 2010 Aug 4;99(3):790-7. doi: 10.1016/j.bpj.2010.05.012.

Atomic force microscopy reveals the alternating subunit arrangement of the TRPP2-TRPV4 heterotetramer.

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Department of Pharmacology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom.


There is evidence that polycystin-2 (TRPP2) interacts with two other members of the transient receptor potential (TRP) family, TRPC1 and TRPV4. We have previously shown that TRPP2 forms a heteromeric complex with TRPC1, with a 2:2 stoichiometry and an alternating subunit arrangement. Here, we used coimmunoprecipitation to show that TRPP2 also interacts with TRPV4, but not with TRPA1 or TRPM8; hence, its promiscuity is limited. We then used atomic force microscopy to study the structure of the TRPV4 homomer and the interaction between TRPP2 and TRPV4. The molecular volume of V5-tagged TRPV4 isolated from singly-transfected tsA 201 cells indicated that it assembled as a homotetramer. The distribution of angles between pairs of anti-V5 antibodies bound to TRPV4 particles had a large peak close to 90 degrees and a smaller peak close to 180 degrees , again consistent with the assembly of TRPV4 as a homotetramer. In contrast, the angle distributions for decoration of the TRPP2-TRPV4 heteromer by either anti-Myc or anti-V5 antibodies had major peaks close to 180 degrees. This result indicates that TRPP2-TRPV4 assembles identically to TRPP2-TRPC1, suggesting a common subunit arrangement among heteromeric TRP channels.

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