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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Identification by mutational analysis of amino acid residues essential in the chaperone function of calreticulin.

Calreticulin is a Ca2+ -binding chaperone that resides in the lumen of the endoplasmic reticulum and is involved in the regulation of intracellular Ca2+ homeostasis and in the folding of newly synthesized glycoproteins. In this study, we have used site-specific mutagenesis to map amino acid residues that are critical in calreticulin function. We have focused on two cysteine residues (Cys(88) and Cys(120)), which form a disulfide bridge in the N-terminal domain of calreticulin, on a tryptophan residue located in the carbohydrate binding site (Trp(302)), and on certain residues located at the tip of the "hairpin-like" P-domain of the protein (Glu(238), Glu(239), Asp(241), Glu(243), and Trp(244)). Calreticulin mutants were expressed in crt(-/-) fibroblasts, and bradykinin-dependent Ca2+ release was measured as a marker of calreticulin function. Bradykinin-dependent Ca2+ release from the endoplasmic reticulum was rescued by wild-type calreticulin and by the Glu(238), Glu(239), Asp(241), and Glu(243) mutants. The Cys(88) and Cys(120) mutants rescued the calreticulin-deficient phenotype only partially ( approximately 40%), and the Trp(244) and Trp(302) mutants did not rescue it at all. We identified four amino acid residues (Glu(239), Asp(241), Glu(243), and Trp(244)) at the hairpin tip of the P-domain that are critical in the formation of a complex between ERp57 and calreticulin. Although the Glu(239), Asp(241), and Glu(243) mutants did not bind ERp57 efficiently, they fully restored bradykinin-dependent Ca2+ release in crt(-/-) cells. This indicates that binding of ERp57 to calreticulin may not be critical for the chaperone function of calreticulin with respect to the bradykinin receptor.[1]


  1. Identification by mutational analysis of amino acid residues essential in the chaperone function of calreticulin. Martin, V., Groenendyk, J., Steiner, S.S., Guo, L., Dabrowska, M., Parker, J.M., Müller-Esterl, W., Opas, M., Michalak, M. J. Biol. Chem. (2006) [Pubmed]
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