Replacement of short segments within transmembrane domains of MC2R disrupts retention signal

Davids Fridmanis, Ramona Petrovska, Dace Pjanova, Helgi B. Schiöth, Janis Klovins (Coresponding Author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


The proteolysis of the pro-opiomelanocortin precursor results in the formation of melanocortins (MCs), a group of peptides that share the conserved-H-F-R-W-sequence, which acts as a pharmacophore for five subtypes of MC receptors (MCRs). MC type 2 receptor (MC2R; also known as ACTHR) is the most specialized of all the MCRs. It is predominantly expressed in the adrenal cortex and specifically binds ACTH. Unlike other MCRs, it requires melanocortin receptor accessory protein 1 (MRAP) for formation of active receptor and for its transport to the cell membrane. The molecular mechanisms underlying this specificity remain poorly understood. In this study, we used directed mutagenesis to investigate the role of various short MC2R sequence segments in receptor membrane trafficking and specific activation upon stimulation with ligands. The strategy of the study was to replace two to five amino acid residues within one MC2R segment with the corresponding residues of MC4R. In total, 20 recombinant receptors C-terminally fused to enhanced green fluorescent protein were generated and their membrane trafficking efficiencies and cAMP response upon stimulation with a-MSH and ACTH(1-24) were estimated during their stand-alone expression and coexpression withMRAP.Our results indicate that both themotif that determines the ligandrecognition specificity and the intracellular retention signal are formed by a specific extracellular structure, which is supported by the correct alignment of the transmembrane domains. Our results also indicate that the aromatic-residue-rich segmentof the secondextracellular loopis involved in the effects mediated by the second ACTH pharmacophore (-K-K-R-R-).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-215
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Molecular Endocrinology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jul 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Chimeric receptor
  • G-protein-coupled receptor
  • GFP
  • MC2R
  • Melanocortin
  • Membrane transport
  • MRAP
  • Rhodopsin

Field of Science*

  • 1.6 Biological sciences
  • 3.1 Basic medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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