Abstract: Cilia/flagella are conserved eukaryotic organelles that play an important role in the control of cell motility and detection of environmental cues. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying ciliary/flagellar assembly, maintenance, disassembly, and signal transduction are not yet completely understood. Recent studies demonstrated that post-translational modifications (PTMs) such as phosphorylation, methylation, glutamylation, and ubiquitination are involved in these processes. In this mini review, we present a summary of research progress in ciliary/flagellar protein ubiquitination, including the ubiquitin conjugation system identified by proteomics as well as the role of ciliary/flagellar protein ubiquitination in flagellar disassembly, motility, and signal transduction. Moreover, we described putative further research directions in the study of ciliary/flagellar protein ubiquitination.
Abstract: Nuclear mRNA export plays an important role in gene expression. We describe the mechanisms of mRNA export including the importance of mRNP assembly, docking with the nuclear basket of the nuclear pore complex (NPC), transit through the central channel of the NPC and cytoplasmic release. We describe multiple mechanisms of mRNA export including NXF1 and CRM1 mediated pathways. Selective groups of mRNAs can be preferentially transported in order to respond to cellular stimuli. RNAs can be selected based on the presence of specific cis-acting RNA elements and binding of specific adaptor proteins. The role that dysregulation of this process plays in human disease is also discussed.
Abstract: Cellular NAD(P)H-dependent oxidoreductase activity with artificial dyes (NAD(P)H-OR) is an indicator of viability, as the cellular redox state is important for biosynthesis and antioxidant defense. However, high NAD(P)H due to impaired mitochondrial oxidation, known as reductive stress, should increase NAD(P)H-OR yet perturb viability. To better understand this complex behavior, we assayed NAD(P)H-OR with resazurin (Alamar Blue) in glioblastoma cell lines U87 and T98G, treated with inhibitors of central metabolism, oxythiamin, and phosphonate analogs of 2-oxo acids. Targeting the thiamin diphosphate (ThDP)-dependent enzymes, the inhibitors are known to decrease the NAD(P)H production in the pentose phosphate shuttle and/or upon mitochondrial oxidation of 2-oxo acids. Nevertheless, the inhibitors elevated NAD(P)H-OR with resazurin in a time- and concentration-dependent manner, suggesting impaired NAD(P)H oxidation rather than increased viability. In particular, inhibition of the ThDP-dependent enzymes affects metabolism of malate, which mediates mitochondrial oxidation of cytosolic NAD(P)H. We showed that oxythiamin not only inhibited mitochondrial 2-oxo acid dehydrogenases, but also induced cell-specific changes in glutamate and malate dehydrogenases and/or malic enzyme. As a result, inhibition of the 2-oxo acid dehydrogenases compromises mitochondrial metabolism, with the dysregulated electron fluxes leading to increases in cellular NAD(P)H-OR. Perturbed mitochondrial oxidation of NAD(P)H may thus complicate the NAD(P)H-based viability assay.
Abstract: Spindle microtubules capture and segregate chromosomes and, therefore, their assembly is an essential event in mitosis. To carry out their mission, many key players for microtubule formation need to be strictly orchestrated. Particularly, proteins that assemble the spindle need to be translocated at appropriate sites during mitosis. A small GTPase (hydrolase enzyme of guanosine triphosphate), Ran, controls this translocation. Ran plays many roles in many cellular events: nucleocytoplasmic shuttling through the nuclear envelope, assembly of the mitotic spindle, and reorganization of the nuclear envelope at the mitotic exit. Although these events are seemingly distinct, recent studies demonstrate that the mechanisms underlying these phenomena are substantially the same as explained by molecular interplay of the master regulator Ran, the transport factor importin, and its cargo proteins. Our review focuses on how the transport machinery regulates mitotic progression of cells. We summarize translocation mechanisms governed by Ran and its regulatory proteins, and particularly focus on Ran-GTP targets in fission yeast that promote spindle formation. We also discuss the coordination of the spatial and temporal regulation of proteins from the viewpoint of transport machinery. We propose that the transport machinery is an essential key that couples the spatial and temporal events in cells.
Abstract: Proteasomes are highly conserved protease complexes responsible for the degradation of aberrant and short-lived proteins. In highly proliferating yeast and mammalian cells, proteasomes are predominantly nuclear. During quiescence and cell cycle arrest, proteasomes accumulate in granules in close proximity to the nuclear envelope/ER. With prolonged quiescence in yeast, these proteasome granules pinch off as membraneless organelles, and migrate as stable entities through the cytoplasm. Upon exit from quiescence, the proteasome granules clear and the proteasomes are rapidly transported into the nucleus, a process reflecting the dynamic nature of these multisubunit complexes. Due to the scarcity of studies on the nuclear transport of mammalian proteasomes, we summarised the current knowledge on the nuclear import of yeast proteasomes. This pathway uses canonical nuclear localisation signals within proteasomal subunits and Srp1/Kap95, and the canonical import receptor, named importin/karyopherin αβ. Blm10, a conserved 240 kDa protein, which is structurally related to Kap95, provides an alternative import pathway. Two models exist upon which either inactive precursor complexes or active holo-enzymes serve as the import cargo. Here, we reconcile both models and suggest that the import of inactive precursor complexes predominates in dividing cells, while the import of mature enzymes mainly occurs upon exit from quiescence.
Abstract: Autophagy plays a major role in the elimination of cellular waste components, the renewal of intracellular proteins and the prevention of the build-up of redundant or defective material. It is fundamental for the maintenance of homeostasis and especially important in post-mitotic neuronal cells, which, without competent autophagy, accumulate protein aggregates and degenerate. Many neurodegenerative diseases are associated with defective autophagy; however, whether altered protein turnover or accumulation of misfolded, aggregate-prone proteins is the primary insult in neurodegeneration has long been a matter of debate. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal disease characterized by selective degeneration of motor neurons. Most of the ALS cases occur in sporadic forms (SALS), while 10%–15% of the cases have a positive familial history (FALS). The accumulation in the cell of misfolded/abnormal proteins is a hallmark of both SALS and FALS, and altered protein degradation due to autophagy dysregulation has been proposed to contribute to ALS pathogenesis. In this review, we focus on the main molecular features of autophagy to provide a framework for discussion of our recent findings about the role in disease pathogenesis of the ALS-linked form of the VAPB gene product, a mutant protein that drives the generation of unusual cytoplasmic inclusions.