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  • Engineering receptors in the secretory pathway for orthogonal signalling control.

Engineering receptors in the secretory pathway for orthogonal signalling control.

Nature communications (2022-11-30)
Mohamed Mahameed, Pengli Wang, Shuai Xue, Martin Fussenegger
ABSTRACT

Synthetic receptors targeted to the secretory pathway often fail to exhibit the expected activity due to post-translational modifications (PTMs) and/or improper folding. Here, we engineered synthetic receptors that reside in the cytoplasm, inside the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), or on the plasma membrane through orientation adjustment of the receptor parts and by elimination of dysfunctional PTMs sites. The cytoplasmic receptors consist of split-TEVp domains that reconstitute an active protease through chemically-induced dimerization (CID) that is triggered by rapamycin, abscisic acid, or gibberellin. Inside the ER, however, some of these receptors were non-functional, but their activity was restored by mutagenesis of cysteine and asparagine, residues that are typically associated with PTMs. Finally, we engineered orthogonal chemically activated cell-surface receptors (OCARs) consisting of the Notch1 transmembrane domain fused to cytoplasmic tTA and extracellular CID domains. Mutagenesis of cysteine residues in CID domains afforded functional OCARs which enabled fine-tuning of orthogonal signalling in mammalian cells.

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