My publications from 2004-2008

 

Abstract

 Escherichia coli inner membrane proteins (IMPs) use different pathways for targeting and membrane integration. We have examined the biogenesis of the F1F0 ATP synthase subunit c, a small double spanning IMP, using complementary in vivo and in vitro approaches. The data suggest that F0c is targeted by the SRP to the membrane, where it inserts at YidC in a Sec-independent mechanism. F0c appears to be the first natural substrate of this novel pathway.


Abstract

 YidC plays a role in the integration and assembly of many (if not all) Escherichia coli inner membrane proteins. Strikingly, YidC operates in two distinct pathways: one associated with the Sec translocon that also mediates protein translocation across the inner membrane and one independent from the Sec translocon. YidC is homologous to Alb3 and Oxa1 that function in the integration of proteins into the thylakoid membrane of chloroplasts and inner membrane of mitochondria, respectively. Here, we have expressed the conserved region of yeast Oxa1 in a conditional E. coli yidC mutant. We find that Oxa1 restores growth upon depletion of YidC. Data obtained from in vivo protease protection assays and in vitro cross-linking and folding assays suggest that Oxa1 complements the insertion of Sec-independent proteins but is unable to take over the Sec-associated function of YidC. Together, our data indicate that the Sec-independent function of YidC is conserved and essential for cell growth.


Abstract

 Inner membrane proteins (IMPs) of Escherichia coli use different pathways for membrane targeting and integration. YidC plays an essential but poorly defined role in the integration and folding of IMPs both in conjunction with the Sec translocon and as a Sec-independent insertase. Depletion of YidC only marginally affects the insertion of Sec-dependent IMPs, whereas it blocks the insertion of a subset of Sec-independent IMPs. Substrates of this latter "YidC-only" pathway include the relatively small IMPs M13 procoat, Pf3 coat protein, and subunit c of the F(1)F(0) ATPase. Recently, it has been shown that the steady state level of the larger and more complex CyoA subunit of the cytochrome o oxidase is also severely affected upon depletion of YidC. In the present study we have analyzed the biogenesis of the integral lipoprotein CyoA. Collectively, our data suggest that the first transmembrane segment of CyoA rather than the signal sequence recruits the signal recognition particle for membrane targeting. Membrane integration and assembly appear to occur in two distinct sequential steps. YidC is sufficient to catalyze insertion of the N-terminal domain consisting of the signal sequence, transmembrane segment 1, and the small periplasmic domain in between. Translocation of the large C-terminal periplasmic domain requires the Sec translocon and SecA, suggesting that for this particular IMP the Sec translocon might operate downstream of YidC.


Abstract

 Members of the YidC/Oxa1/Alb3 protein family function in the biogenesis of membrane proteins in bacteria, mitochondria and chloroplasts. In Escherichia coli, YidC plays a key role in the integration and assembly of many inner membrane proteins. Interestingly, YidC functions both in concert with the Sec-translocon and as a separate insertase independent of the translocon. Mitochondria of higher eukaryotes contain two distant homologues of YidC: Oxa1 and Cox18/Oxa2. Oxa1 is required for the insertion of membrane proteins into the mitochondrial inner membrane. Cox18/Oxa2 plays a poorly defined role in the biogenesis of the cytochrome c oxidase complex. Employing a genetic complementation approach by expressing the conserved region of yeast Cox18 in E. coli, we show here that Cox18 is able to complement the essential Sec-independent function of YidC. This identifies Cox18 as a bona fide member of the YidC/Oxa1/Alb3 family.


Abstract

 The Escherichia coli cell division protein FtsQ is a central component of the divisome. FtsQ is a bitopic membrane protein with a large C-terminal periplasmic domain. In this work we investigated the role of the transmembrane segment (TMS) that anchors FtsQ in the cytoplasmic membrane. A set of TMS mutants was made and analyzed for the ability to complement an ftsQ mutant. Study of the various steps involved in FtsQ biogenesis revealed that one mutant (L29/32R;V38P) failed to functionally insert into the membrane, whereas another mutant (L29/32R) was correctly assembled and interacted with FtsB and FtsL but failed to localize efficiently to the cell division site. Our results indicate that the FtsQ TMS plays a role in FtsQ localization to the division site


Abstract

 The biogenesis of Escherichia coli inner membrane proteins (IMPs) is assisted by targeting and insertion factors such as the signal recognition particle (SRP), the Sec-translocon and YidC with translocation of (large) periplasmic domains energized by SecA and the proton motive force (pmf). The use of these factors and forces is probably primarily determined by specific structural features of an IMP. To analyze these features we have engineered a set of model IMPs based on endogenous E. coli IMPs known to follow distinct targeting and insertion pathways. The modified model IMPs were analyzed for altered routing using an in vivo protease mapping approach. The data suggest a facultative use of different combinations of factors.


Abstract

Little is known about the quality control of proteins upon integration in the inner membrane of Escherichia coli. Here, we demonstrate that YidC and FtsH are adjacent to a nascent, truncated membrane protein using in vitro photo cross-linking. YidC plays a critical but poorly understood role in the biogenesis of E. coli inner membrane proteins (IMPs). FtsH functions as a membrane chaperone and protease. Furthermore, we show that FtsH and its modulator proteins HflK and HflC copurify with tagged YidC and, vice versa, that YidC copurifies with tagged FtsH. These results suggest that FtsH and YidC have a linked role in the quality control of IMPs.