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J Biol Chem. 1991 Jul 5;266(19):12655-61.

Mapping of the mastoparan-binding site on G proteins. Cross-linking of [125I-Tyr3,Cys11]mastoparan to Go.

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Department of Pharmacology, Southwestern Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas 75235-9041.


Mastoparan (MP) activates GTP-binding regulatory proteins (G proteins) by promoting GDP/GTP exchange through a mechanism similar to that of G protein-coupled receptors (Higashijima, T., Burnier, J., and Ross, E. M. (1990) J. Biol. Chem. 265, 14176-14186). [Tyr3, Cys11]MP was synthesized and shown to have regulatory activity similar to that of mastoparan when assayed in the presence of dithiothreitol (DTT). Activation by [Tyr3,Cys11]MP in the absence of DTT was complex in its kinetics, concentration dependence, and dependence on detergents. [125I-Tyr3,Cys11]MP bound covalently to the alpha subunit of G proteins. Cross-linking was blocked by mastoparan or [Tyr3,Cys11]MP. Cross-linking was enhanced by the addition of beta gamma subunits, but no cross-linking to beta gamma subunits was observed. Cross-linking was inhibited by incubation of Go with guanosine 5'-O-(thiotriphosphate) and Mg2+ and was reversed by incubation with DTT or 2-mercaptoethanol. Stoichiometry of labeling was consistent with the cross-linking of one molecule of [125I-Tyr3,Cys11]MP/alpha subunit, and CNBr hydrolysis of the [125I-Tyr3,Cys11]MP-alpha o adduct yielded one major labeled peptide fragment of approximately 6 kDa. Amino acid sequencing of this CNBr fragment prepared from recombinant alpha o showed that cross-linking occurred at Cys3. No alpha o sequence was obtained from the same fragment prepared from bovine brain alpha o, which is blocked by a myristoyl group at Gly2. Regulation of Go by MP was eliminated by tryptic proteolysis of the amino-terminal region. These observations suggest that the amino-terminal region of G protein alpha subunits contributes to the mastoparan-binding site, which may also be the receptor-binding site, and is involved in regulation of nucleotide exchange.

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