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Human pancreas-specific protein disulfide isomerase homolog (PDIp) is redox-regulated through formation of an inter-subunit disulfide bond.

Fu X., Zhu B.T.

Protein disulfide isomerase (PDI) and its homologs are catalysts of the formation of disulfide bonds in secretory proteins, and they also serve as molecular chaperones. In the present study, we investigated the redox-mediated regulation of the structures and functions of human pancreas-specific PDI homolog (PDIp). We found that formation of an inter-subunit disulfide bond in the recombinant human PDIp can alter not only its structure, but also its functions. PDIp exists predominantly as monomer under reducing conditions, but the dimeric form is significantly increased following the removal of the reducing agent, due to the formation of an inter-subunit disulfide bond. The oxidized PDIp (with an inter-subunit disulfide bond) appears to expose more hydrophobic patches and is more sensitive to protease digestion compared to the reduced form. Along with these structural changes, the oxidized PDIp also exhibits an enhanced chaperone activity. The formation of the inter-subunit disulfide bond in PDIp is mainly contributed by its non-active cysteine residue (cysteine-4), which is only present in human and primate PDIp, but not in rodent PDIp. In addition, we observed that the formation of the inter-subunit disulfide bond in PDIp is redox-dependent and is favored under oxidizing conditions, and that PDIp can function as a chaperone to form stable complexes with various non-native cellular proteins, particularly under oxidizing conditions. In light of these observations, it is concluded that the structures and functions of human PDIp are redox-regulated through formation of an inter-subunit disulfide bond between two cysteine-4 residues.

Arch. Biochem. Biophys. 485:1-9(2009) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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