Mechanisms of muscarinic receptor action on G(o) in reconstituted phospholipid vesicles

V. A. Florio, P. C. Sternweis

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Purified muscarinic receptors (0.5-10 nmol of L-[3H]quinuclidinyl benzilate-binding sites/mg of protein) from bovine brain and the GTP-dependent regulatory protein, G(o), were reconstituted with a lipid mixture of phosphatidylcholine and cholesterol. Essentially all of the receptors could interact with G(o) as evinced by increases in affinity for agonist as large as 800-fold. Both the α and βγ subunits of G(o) were required for this effect. Similarly, both subunits were required for the stimulation of guanine nucleotide exchange by agonists. This latter action of the receptor on G(o) was catalytic and potentiated markedly by prior treatment with dithiothreitol. Initially, agonist stimulation of association of GTP and guanosine 5'-(3-O-thio)triphosphate (GTPγS) to G(o) was small and variable due to high basal rates. Prior addition of excess GDP inhibited the basal rate of exchange but allowed stimulation by agonists. Under these conditions, oxotremorine stimulated the rates of association of GTPγS up to 10-fold. This selective effect was not mimicked by GTP which inhibited both the basal and hormone-dependent rates. Direct examination of the association of GTP and GDP to G(o) demonstrated that agonist caused either stimulation or marked inhibition, respectively. These results indicate that receptors stimulate guanine nucleotide exchange on G proteins by both increasing the rates of dissociation of nucleotides and altering their relative affinities such that binding of GTP becomes highly favored over GDP. This would ensure the activation of G proteins by receptors in the presence of both nucleotides.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3909-3915
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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