The full-length, cytoplasmic C-terminus of the beta 2-adrenergic receptor expressed in E. coli acts as a substrate for phosphorylation by protein kinase A, insulin receptor tyrosine kinase, GRK2, but not protein kinase C and suppresses desensitization when expressed in vivo
Doronin, S.; Lin, F.; Wang, H.Y.; Malbon, C.C.
Protein Expression and Purification 20(3): 451-461
The ability of the cytoplasmic, full-length C-terminus of the beta 2-adrenergic receptor (BAC1) expressed in Escherichia coli to act as a functional domain and substrate for protein phosphorylation was tested. BAC1 was expressed at high-levels, purified, and examined in solution as a substrate for protein phosphorylation. The mobility of BAC1 on SDS-PAGE mimics that of the native receptor itself, displaying decreased mobility upon chemical reduction of disulfide bonds. Importantly, the C-terminal, cytoplasmic domain of the receptor expressed in E. coli was determined to be a substrate for phosphorylation by several candidate protein kinases known to regulate G-protein-linked receptors. Mapping was performed by proteolytic degradation and matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization, time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Purified BAC1 is phosphorylated readily by protein kinase A, the phosphorylation occurring within the predicted motif RRSSSK. The kinetic properties of the phosphorylation by protein kinase A displayed cooperative character. The activated insulin receptor tyrosine kinase, which phosphorylates the beta-adrenergic receptor in vivo, phosphorylates BAC1. The Y364 residue of BAC1 was predominantly phosphorylated by the insulin receptor kinase. GRK2 catalyzed modest phosphorylation of BAC1. Phosphorylation of the human analog of BAC1 in which Cys341 and Cys378 were mutated to minimize disulfide bonding constraints, displayed robust phosphorylation following thermal activation, suggesting under standard conditions that the population of BAC1 molecules capable of assuming the "activated" conformer required by GRKs is low. BAC1 was not a substrate for protein kinase C, suggesting that the canonical site in the second cytoplasmic loop of the intact receptor is preferred. The functional nature of BAC1 was tested additionally by expression of BAC1 protein in human epidermoid carcinoma A431 cells. BAC1 was found to act as a dominant-negative, blocking agonist-induced desensitization of the beta-adrenergic receptor when expressed in mammalian cells. Thus, the C-terminal, cytoplasmic tail of this G-protein-linked receptor expressed in E. coli acts as a functional domain, displaying fidelity with regard to protein kinase action in vivo and acting as a dominant-negative with respect to agonist-induced desensitization.