Development of “Plug and Play” Fiducial Marks for Structural Studies of GPCR Signaling Complexes by Single-Particle Cryo-EM

Dutka P, Mukherjee S, Gao X, Kang Y, de Waal PW, Wang L, Zhuang Y, Melcher K, Zhang C, Xu HE, Kossiakoff AA

Structure 2019 Oct;

PMID: 31669042


“Universal” synthetic antibody (sAB)-based fiducial marks have been generated by customized phage display selections to facilitate the rapid structure determination of G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) signaling complexes by single-particle cryo-electron microscopy (SP cryo-EM). sABs were generated to the two major G protein subclasses: trimeric G and G, as well as mini-G, and were tested to ensure binding in the context of their cognate GPCRs. Epitope binning revealed that multiple distinct epitopes exist for each G(αβγ) protein. Several Gβγ-specific sABs, cross-reactive between trimeric G and G, were identified suggesting they could be used across all subclasses in a “plug and play” fashion. sABs were also generated to a representative of another class of GPCR signaling partner, G protein receptor kinase 1 (GRK1) and evaluated further, supporting the generalizability of the approach. EM data suggested that the subclass-specific sABs provide effective single and dual fiducials for multiple GPCR signaling complexes.