Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

The Ubiquitin versus NEDD8 Binding Preference of NEDD4 Binding Protein 1 (N4BP1) Is Based on a Mutual Conformational Perturbation

Version 1 : Received: 20 February 2019 / Approved: 22 February 2019 / Online: 22 February 2019 (07:56:43 CET)

How to cite: Nepravishta, R.; Ferrentino, F.; Mandaliti, W.; Mattioni, A.; Castagnoli, L.; Cesareni, G.; Paci, M.; Santonico, E. The Ubiquitin versus NEDD8 Binding Preference of NEDD4 Binding Protein 1 (N4BP1) Is Based on a Mutual Conformational Perturbation. Preprints 2019, 2019020213 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201902.0213.v1). Nepravishta, R.; Ferrentino, F.; Mandaliti, W.; Mattioni, A.; Castagnoli, L.; Cesareni, G.; Paci, M.; Santonico, E. The Ubiquitin versus NEDD8 Binding Preference of NEDD4 Binding Protein 1 (N4BP1) Is Based on a Mutual Conformational Perturbation. Preprints 2019, 2019020213 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201902.0213.v1).

Abstract

Ubiquitin binding domains (UBDs) are modular elements that bind non-covalently to ubiquitin and act as downstream effectors and amplifiers of the ubiquitination signal. With few exceptions, UBDs recognize the hydrophobic path centered on Ile44 (Leu-8, Ile-44, Val-70). Nevertheless, a variety of different orientations, which can be attributed to specific contacts between each UBD and surface residues surrounding the hydrophobic patch, specify how each class of UBD recognizes ubiquitin. Here, we describe the structure of a novel ubiquitin-binding domain that we identified in NEDD4 binding protein 1 (N4BP1). By performing protein sequence analysis, mutagenesis and NMR spectroscopy of the 15N isotopically labelled protein, we demonstrate that a Phe-Pro motif in N4BP1 recognizes the canonical hydrophobic patch of ubiquitin. This recognition mode resembles the molecular mechanism evolved in the CUE (Coupling of ubiquitin conjugation to ER degradation) domain family, where an invariant proline, usually following a phenylalanine, is required for binding to ubiquitin. Interestingly, the UBD of N4BP1 is evolutionary related to CUBAN (Cullin binding domain associating with NEDD8) (40% identity and 47% similarity), a protein module that also recognizes the ubiquitin-like NEDD8, which is the closest relative of ubiquitin (58% identity and 80% similarity). By performing circular dichroism and 15N NMR chemical shift perturbation of N4BP1 in complex with ubiquitin, we demonstrate that the UBD of N4BP1 lacks the NEDD8 binding properties observed in CUBAN and it recognizes the Ile44-centered patch of ubiquitin through a dedicated binding site, which share some of the features observed in the CUE domain family. Moreover, we show that, in addition to mediating the interaction with ubiquitin and ubiquitinated substrates, both the CUBAN and the UBD of N4BP1 are poly-ubiquitinated in cells. This modification is dependent on the presence of a functional domain. We believe that the structural and functional characterization of this novel UBD will allow a deeper understanding of the molecular mechanisms governing N4BP1 function, while at the same time providing a valuable tool for clarifying how the discrimination between ubiquitin and the highly related NEDD8 is achieved.

Subject Areas

CUBAN; Ubiquitin-binding domains (UBDs); KHNYN; NEDD8; NMR spectroscopy

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