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Residues flanking the COOH-terminal C-region of a model eukaryotic signal peptide influence the site of its cleavage by signal peptidase and the extent of coupling of its co-translational translocation and proteolytic processing in vitro


Residues flanking the COOH-terminal C-region of a model eukaryotic signal peptide influence the site of its cleavage by signal peptidase and the extent of coupling of its co-translational translocation and proteolytic processing in vitro



Journal of Biological Chemistry 265(35): 21797-21803



ISSN/ISBN: 0021-9258

PMID: 2123875

The polar, COOH-terminal c-region of signal peptides has been considered to be most important for influencing the efficiency and fidelity of signal peptidase cleavage while the hydrophobic core or h-region appears indispensable for initiating translocation. To identify structural features of residues flanking the c-region that influence the fidelity and efficiency of signal peptidase cleavage as well as co-translational translocation, we introduced six amino acid substitutions into the COOH terminus of the hydrophobic core and seven substitutions at the NH2 terminus of the mature region (the +1 position) of a model eukaryotic preprotein-human pre(delta pro)apoA-II. This preprotein contains several potential sites for signal peptidase cleavage. The functional consequences of these mutations were assayed using an in vitro co-translational translocation/processing system and by post-translational cleavage with purified, detergent-solubilized, hen oviduct signal peptidase. The efficiency of translocation could be correlated with the hydrophobic character of the residue introduced at the COOH terminus of the h-region. Some h/c boundary mutants underwent co-translational translocation across the microsomal membrane with only minimal cleavage yet they were cleaved post-translationally by hen oviduct signal peptidase more efficiently than other mutants which exhibited a high degree of coupling of co-translational translocation and cleavage. These data suggest that features at the COOH terminus of the h-domain can influence "presentation" of the cleavage site to signal peptidase. The +1 residue substitutions had minor effects on the extent of co-translational translocation and processing. However, these +1, as well as h/c boundary mutations, had dramatic effects on the site of cleavage chosen by signal peptidase, indicating that residues flanking the c-region of this prototypic eukaryotic signal peptide can affect the fidelity of its proteolytic processing. The site(s) selected by canine microsomal and purified hen oviduct signal peptidase were very similar, suggesting that "intrinsic" structural features of this prepeptide can influence the selectivity of eukaryotic signal peptidase cleavage, independent of the microsomal membrane and associated translocation apparatus.

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Accession: 018096028

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