REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202211.0062.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Medicinal Chemistry Keywords: membrane transporter; SLC; solute carrier; drug design; pharmacokinetics; prodrug; nanoparticle; bile acids
Online: 3 November 2022 (01:09:54 CET)
Transmembrane transport of small organic and inorganic molecules is one of the cornerstones of cellular metabolism. Among transmembrane transporters, solute carrier (SLC) proteins form the largest, albeit very diverse, superfamily with over 400 members. It has been early on recognized that xenobiotics can directly interact with SLCs and that this interaction can fundamentally determine their efficacy, including bioavailability and intertissue distribution. Apart from the well-established prodrug strategy, the chemical ligation of transporter substrates to nanoparticles of various chemical composition has recently been used as a means to enhance their targeting or absorption. In this review, we summarize efforts in drug design exploiting interactions with specific SLC transporters to optimize their therapeutic effects. Furthermore, we describe current and future challenges as well as new directions for the advanced development of therapeutics that target SLC transporters.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0488.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Biochemistry And Molecular Biology Keywords: mitochondrial carriers; SLC transporters; SLC25; MCF; SLC54; MPC; SLC55; LETM; SLC56; sideroflexin; ABC transporter; sequence analysis; protein targeting
Online: 23 October 2020 (11:00:09 CEST)
Mitochondrial carriers facilitate the transfer of small molecules across the inner mitochondrial membrane (IMM) to support mitochondrial function and core cellular processes. In addition to the classical mitochondrial carrier family SLC25, the past decade led to the discovery of additional protein families that exhibit IMM localization and transporter-like properties. These include mitochondrial pyruvate carriers, sideroflexins and mitochondrial cation/H+ exchangers that have been linked to vital physiological functions and disease. Their structures and transport mechanisms are still largely unknown and understudied. Protein sequence analysis per se can often pinpoint hotspots that are of functional or structural importance. In this review, we summarize current knowledge about sequence features of mitochondrial transporters with a special focus on the newly included SLC54, SLC55 and SLC56 families of the SLC solute carrier superfamily. Taking a step further, we combined sequence conservation analysis with transmembrane segment and secondary structure prediction methods to extract residue positions and sequence motifs that likely play a role in substrate binding, binding site gating or structural stability. We hope that our review will help guide future experimental efforts by the scientific community to unravel the transport mechanism and structure of these novel mitochondrial carriers.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1782.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: COVID-19; microscale thermophoresis; SLC6A20 amino acid transporter; antiviral agents
Online: 25 May 2023 (09:33:29 CEST)
As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, new variants of SARS-CoV-2 continue to emerge. This underscores the need to develop optimized tools to study such variants, as well as new coronaviruses that may arise in the future, and to use them for antiviral drug development. Here we introduce microscale thermophoresis (MST) as a reliable and versatile tool for coronavirus research, which we demonstrate through three different applications described in this report: 1) binding of the SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor binding domain (RBD) to peptides as a strategy to prevent virus entry, 2) binding of the RBD to the viral receptor ACE2, and 3) binding of the RBD to ACE2 in complex with the amino acid transporter SLC6A20/SIT1 or its allelic variant rs61731475 (p.Ile529Val). Our results demonstrate that MST is a highly precise approach to study protein-protein and/or protein-ligand interactions in coronavirus research, making it an ideal tool for studying viral variants and developing antiviral agents. The ability to measure interactions with proteins in their near-native plasma membrane environment is a unique advantage of the MST assay over other available binding assays.