Functional positive cooperative activation of the extracellular calcium ([Ca2+]o)-sensing receptor (CaSR), a member of the family C G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), by [Ca2+]o or amino acids elicits intracellular Ca2+ ([Ca2+]i) oscillations. Here, we report the central role of predicted Ca2+-binding Site 1 within the hinge region of the extracellular domain (ECD) of CaSR and its interaction with other Ca2+-binding sites within the ECD in tuning functional positive homotropic cooperativity caused by changes in [Ca2+]o. Next, we identify an adjacent L-Phe-binding pocket that is responsible for positive heterotropic cooperativity between [Ca2+]o and L- Phe in eliciting CaSR-mediated [Ca2+]i oscillations. The hetero-communication between Ca2+ and an amino acid globally enhances functional positive homotropic cooperative activation of CaSR in response to [Ca2+]o signaling by positively impacting multiple [Ca2+]o-binding sites within the ECD. Elucidation of the underlying mechanism provides important insights into the longstanding question of how the receptor transduces signals initiated by [Ca2+]o and amino acids into intracellular signaling events.
Identification of an L-Phenylalanine Binding Site Enhancing The Cooperative Responses of The Calcium Sensing Receptor to Calcium. Chen Zhang, Yun Huang, Yusheng Jiang, Nagaraju Mulpuri, Ling Wei, Donald Hamelberg, Edward M. Brown and Jenny J. Yang. J. Biol. Chem. published online January 6, 2014. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M113.537357
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