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Abian O.,University of Zaragoza | Abian O.,Instituto Aragones Of Ciencias Of La Salud | Abian O.,Research Center Biomedica En Red En El Area Tematica Of Enfermedades Hepaticas gestivas | Vega S.,University of Zaragoza | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

The nonstructural protein 3 (NS3) from the hepatitis C virus processes the non-structural region of the viral precursor polyprotein in infected hepatic cells. The NS3 protease activity has been considered a target for drug development since its identification two decades ago. Although specific inhibitors have been approved for clinical therapy very recently, resistance-associated mutations have already been reported for those drugs, compromising their long-term efficacy. Therefore, there is an urgent need for new anti-HCV agents with low susceptibility to resistance-associated mutations. Regarding NS3 protease, two strategies have been followed: competitive inhibitors blocking the active site and allosteric inhibitors blocking the binding of the accessory viral protein NS4A. In this work we exploit the intrinsic Zn+2-regulated plasticity of the protease to identify a new type of allosteric inhibitors. In the absence of Zn+2, the NS3 protease adopts a partially-folded inactive conformation. We found ligands binding to the Zn+2-free NS3 protease, trap the inactive protein, and block the viral life cycle. The efficacy of these compounds has been confirmed in replicon cell assays. Importantly, direct calorimetric assays reveal a low impact of known resistance-associated mutations, and enzymatic assays provide a direct evidence of their inhibitory activity. They constitute new low molecular-weight scaffolds for further optimization and provide several advantages: 1) new inhibition mechanism simultaneously blocking substrate and cofactor interactions in a non-competitive fashion, appropriate for combination therapy; 2) low impact of known resistance-associated mutations; 3) inhibition of NS4A binding, thus blocking its several effects on NS3 protease. © 2013 Abian et al.

Ayuso-Tejedor S.,University of Zaragoza | Abian O.,University of Zaragoza | Abian O.,CIBER ISCIII | Abian O.,Research Center Biomedica En Red En El Area Tematica Of Enfermedades Hepaticas gestivas | Sancho J.,University of Zaragoza
Protein Engineering, Design and Selection | Year: 2011

Increasing protein stability is interesting for practical reasons and because it tests our understanding of protein energetics. We explore here the feasibility of stabilizing proteins by replacing underexposed polar residues by apolar ones of similar size and shape. We have compared the stability of wild-type apoflavodoxin with that of a few carefully selected mutants carrying Y → F, Q → L, T → V or K → M replacements. Although a clear inverse correlation between native solvent exposures of replaced polar residues and stability of mutants is observed, most mutations fail to stabilize the protein. The promising exceptions are the two Q → L mutations tested, which characteristically combine the greatest reduction in polar burial with the greatest increase in apolar burial relative to wild type. Analysis of published stability data corresponding to a variety of mutant proteins confirms that, unlike Y → F or T → V replacements, Q → L mutations tend to be stabilizing, and it suggests that N → L mutations might be stabilizing as well. On the other hand, we show that the stability changes associated to the apoflavodoxin mutations can be rationalized in terms of differential polar and apolar burials upon folding plus a generic destabilizing penalty term. Simple equations combining these contributions predict stability changes in a large data set of 113 mutants (Y → F, Q → L or T → V) similarly well as more complex algorithms available on the Internet. © The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.

Vega S.,University of Zaragoza | Abian O.,University of Zaragoza | Abian O.,Instituto Aragones Of Ciencias Of La Salud Iacs | Abian O.,Research Center Biomedica En Red En El Area Tematica Of Enfermedades Hepaticas gestivas | Velazquez-Campoy A.,University of Zaragoza
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - General Subjects | Year: 2016

Background Conformational changes coupled to ligand binding constitute the structural and energetics basis underlying cooperativity, allostery and, in general, protein regulation. These conformational rearrangements are associated with heat capacity changes. ITC is a unique technique for studying binding interactions because of the simultaneous determination of the binding affinity and enthalpy, and for providing the best estimates of binding heat capacity changes. Scope of review Still controversial issues in ligand binding are the discrimination between the "conformational selection model" and the "induced fit model", and whether or not conformational changes lead to temperature dependent apparent binding heat capacities. The assessment of conformational changes associated with ligand binding by ITC is discussed. In addition, the "conformational selection" and "induced fit" models are reconciled, and discussed within the context of intrinsically (partially) unstructured proteins. Major conclusions Conformational equilibrium is a major contribution to binding heat capacity changes. A simple model may explain both conformational selection and induced fit scenarios. A temperature-independent binding heat capacity does not necessarily indicate absence of conformational changes upon ligand binding. ITC provides information on the energetics of conformational changes associated with ligand binding (and other possible additional coupled equilibria). General significance Preferential ligand binding to certain protein states leads to an equilibrium shift that is reflected in the coupling between ligand binding and additional equilibria. This represents the structural/energetic basis of the widespread dependence of ligand binding parameters on temperature, as well as pH, ionic strength and the concentration of other chemical species. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Microcalorimetry in the BioSciences - Principles and Applications, edited by Fadi Bou-Abdallah. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Abian O.,Hospital Universitario Miguel Servet | Abian O.,Aragon Health science Institute ICS | Abian O.,University of Zaragoza | Abian O.,Research Center Biomedica En Red En El Area Tematica Of Enfermedades Hepaticas gestivas | And 12 more authors.
Molecular Pharmaceutics | Year: 2011

Gaucher disease (GD) is a disorder of glycosphingolipid metabolism caused by deficiency of lysosomal glucocerebrosidase (GlcCerase) activity, due to conformationally or functionally defective variants, resulting in progressive deposition of glycosylceramide in macrophages. The glucose analogue, N-butyldeoxynojirimycin (NB-DNJ, miglustat), is an inhibitor of the ceramide-specific glycosyltransferase, which catalyzes the first step of glycosphingolipid biosynthesis and is currently approved for the oral treatment of type 1 GD. In a previous work, we found a GlcCerase activity increase in cell cultures in the presence of NB-DNJ, which could imply that this compound is not only a substrate reducer but also a pharmacological chaperone or inhibitor for GlcCerase degradation. In this work we compare imiglucerase (the enzyme currently used for replacement therapy) and velaglucerase alfa (a novel therapeutic enzyme form) in terms of conformational stability and enzymatic activity, as well as the effect of NB-DNJ on them. The interaction between these enzymes and NB-DNJ was studied by isothermal titration calorimetry. Our results reveal that, although velaglucerase alfa and imiglucerase exhibit very similar activity profiles, velaglucerase alfa shows higher in vitro thermal stability and is less prone to aggregation/precipitation, which could be advantageous for storage and clinical administration. In addition, we show that at neutral pH NB-DNJ binds to and enhances the stability of both enzymes, while at mildly acidic lysosomal conditions it does not bind to them. These results support the potential role of NB-DNJ as a pharmacological chaperone, susceptible of being part of pharmaceutical formulation or combination therapy for GD in the future. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Rodriguez-Ortigosa C.M.,University of Navarra | Rodriguez-Ortigosa C.M.,Research Center Medica Aplicada | Celay J.,University of Navarra | Olivas I.,University of Navarra | And 12 more authors.
Gastroenterology | Year: 2014

Background & Aims Bile salts inhibit their own production by inducing the nuclear receptor small heterodimer partner (SHP) (encoded by NR0B2), which contributes to repression of the gene encoding cholesterol 7α-hydroxylase (CYP7A1), a key enzyme for the control of bile salt synthesis. On the other hand, bile salts stimulate hepatic synthesis of nitric oxide. We investigated the role of nitric oxide signaling in the control of CYP7A1 expression and the involvement in this process of glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH), which participates in intracellular propagation of nitric oxide signals.Methods We studied the effects of inhibitors of nitric oxide synthesis (L-NG-nitroarginine methyl ester [L-NAME]) or protein nitrosylation (via dithiothreitol) on bile salt homeostasis in male Wistar rats placed on a cholate-rich diet for 5 days and in cultured primary hepatocytes. S-nitrosylation of GAPDH was assessed using a biotin-switch assay. Interacions of SHP with other proteins and with the Cyp7a1 promoter sequence were studied using immunoprecipitation and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays. We reduced the GAPDH levels in H35 cells with small interfering RNAs. GAPDH nitrosylation was assessed in normal and cholestatic rat and human livers.Results Rats placed on cholate-rich diets and given L-NAME had increased intrahepatic and biliary levels of bile salts, and deficiency in repression of CYP7A1 (at the messenger RNA and protein levels) in liver tissue, despite preserved induction of SHP. In cultured hepatocytes, L-NAME or dithiothreitol blocked cholate-induced down-regulation of CYP7A1 without impairing SHP up-regulation. In hepatocytes, cholate promoted S-nitrosylation of GAPDH and its translocation to the nucleus, accompanied by S-nitrosylation of histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2) and Sirtuin 1 (SIRT1), deacetylases that participate, respectively, in the formation of Cyp7a1 and Shp repressor complexes. Knockdown of GAPDH prevented repression of CYP7A1 by cholate, and blocking nuclear transport of nitrosylated GAPDH reduced cholate-induced nitrosylation of HDAC2 and SIRT1; this effect was accompanied by abrogation of Cyp7a1 repression. Cholate induced binding of SHP to HDAC2 and its recruitment to the Cyp7a1 promoter; these processes were inhibited by blocking nitric oxide synthesis. Levels of nitrosylated GAPDH and nitrosylated HDAC2 were increased in cholestatic human and rat livers reflecting increased concentrations of bile salts in these conditions.Conclusions In rat liver, excess levels of bile salts activate a GAPDH-mediated transnitrosylation cascade that provides feedback inhibition of bile salt synthesis. © 2014 by the AGA Institute.

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