Protocols in Current Issue
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0 Q&A 1963 Views Nov 20, 2021

In this protocol, we describe the analysis of protein stability over time, using synthesis shutoff. As an example, we express HA-tagged yeast mitofusin Fzo1 in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and inhibit translation via cycloheximide (CHX). Proteasomal inhibition with MG132 is performed, as an optional step, before the addition of CHX. Proteins are extracted via trichloroacetic acid (TCA) precipitation and subsequently separated via SDS-PAGE. Immunoblotting and antibody-decoration are performed to detect Fzo1 using HA-specific antibodies. We have adapted the method of blocking protein translation with cycloheximide to analyze the stability of high molecular weight proteins, including post-translational modifications and their impact on protein turnover.

1 Q&A 4184 Views Apr 20, 2020
Fibrinolysis is an integral part of the matrix remodeling process that contributes to tissue repair. Fibrin clots are broken down during fibrinolysis in a controlled process. Fibrin degradation products (FDPs) have also been shown to have a role in the regulation of cell growth and are implicated in various vascular diseases. This protocol was designed to quantitatively measure the extent of fibrin breakdown and how this can be adapted as a tool to further investigate the pathway involved in fibrinolysis or fibrin degradation products. Until now, we haven’t found an alternative method to analysis fibrinolysis.
0 Q&A 2587 Views Apr 5, 2020
Cyclic nucleotide degrading phosphodiesterase (PDE) enzymes are crucial to the fine tuning of cAMP signaling responses, playing a pivotal role in regulating the temporal and spatial characteristics of discrete cAMP nanodomains and hence the activity of cAMP-effector proteins. As a consequence of orchestrating cAMP homeostasis, dysfunctional PDE activity plays a central role in disease pathogenesis. This highlights the need for developing methods that can be used to further understand PDE function and assess the effectiveness of potentially novel PDE therapeutics. Here we describe such an approach, where PDE activity is indirectly measured through the direct quantification of radioactively tagged cAMP (pmol/min-1/mg-1). This method provides a highly sensitive tool for investigating PDE functionality.
0 Q&A 9247 Views May 5, 2018
Autophagy is a key player in the maintenance of cellular homeostasis in eukaryotes, and numerous diseases, including cancer and neurodegenerative disorders, are associated with alterations in autophagy. The interest for studying autophagy has grown intensely in the last two decades, and so has the arsenal of methods utilised to study this highly dynamic and complex process. Changes in the expression and/or localisation of autophagy-related proteins are frequently assessed by Western blot and various microscopy techniques. Such analyses may be indicative of alterations in autophagy-related processes and informative about the specific marker being investigated. However, since these proteins are part of the autophagic machinery, and not autophagic cargo, they cannot be used to draw conclusions regarding autophagic cargo flux. Here, we provide a protocol to quantitatively assess bulk autophagic flux by employing the long-lived protein degradation assay. Our procedure, which traces the degradation of 14C valine-labelled proteins, is simple and quick, allows for processing of a relatively large number of samples in parallel, and can in principle be used with any adherent cell line. Most importantly, it enables quantitative measurements of endogenous cargo flux through the autophagic pathway. As such, it is one of the gold standards for studying autophagic activity.
0 Q&A 8082 Views Sep 5, 2017
The fine-tuned balance of protein level, conformation and location within the cell is vital for the dynamic changes required for a cell to respond to a given stimulus. This requires the regulated turnover of damaged or short-lived proteins through the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS). Thus, the protease activity of the proteasome is adjusted to meet the current demands of protein degradation via the UPS within the cell. We describe the adaptation of an intramolecular quenched fluorescence assay utilizing substrate-mimic peptides for the measurement of proteasome activity in total plant extracts. The peptide substrates contain donor-quencher pairs that flank the scissile bond. Following cleavage, the increase in dequenched donor emission of the product is subsequently measured over time and used to calculate the relative proteasome activity.
0 Q&A 6356 Views Mar 20, 2017
Highly regulated and targeted protein degradation plays a fundamental role in almost all cellular processes. Determination of the protein half-life by the chase assay serves as a powerful and popular strategy to compare the protein stability and study proteolysis pathways in cells. Here, we describe a chase assay in Haloferax volcanii, a halophilic archaeon as the model organism.
0 Q&A 17830 Views Sep 5, 2016
The half-life of a protein is a characteristic property, and can be modulated by post-translational modifications, changes in subcellular localization, and/or interaction with other proteins or ligands. As one determinant of its steady-state level, a protein’s degradation represents an important distinguishing attribute relevant to its biological function. Because protein longevity cannot be elucidated from bioinformatics analyses, it must be determined empirically. Here we describe two approaches for in vivo half-life determination in plants: 1. pooled-seedling degradation assays monitoring either tagged versions of the protein (luciferase fusions or other epitope tags) or following the endogenous protein; 2. single-seedling degradation assays using luciferase fusion proteins. The advantages of these approaches are their simplicity and low cost.

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