Monday, December 14, 2009

#12 ER lumen protein

GRE-ST question number 54 is about ER proteins and functions.
The KDEL sequence, found on luminal proteins of the ER, is responsible for
(A) translocation of proteins into the ER lumen
(B) insertion of proteins into the membrane of the ER
(C) quality control in the ER
(D) recognition by signal peptidase of the signal sequence
(E) retrieval of ER luminal proteins from the Golgi

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This question is just seems to be hard. Just google and you'll probably find this wikipedia article on ER, where KDEL function is described clearly.
Point is that there are two types of proteins in ER lumen: those which should be transported further (to Goldgi) and those which work inside ER (e.g. linking oligosaccharides to proteins). So there should be some anchor for that "stable" proteins and it links to KDEL sequence on the end of those proteins. And because they cannot be fixed any way (or it would be very, very energetically unfavourable) they are transported back from Golgi to ER by specific KDEL-recetors.
So right answer is E.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

#14 Protein secretion

GRE-ST question #98.
All of the following processes occur in the pathway leading to regulated protein secretion in animal cells EXCEPT
(A) formation of transport vesicles from the rough endoplasmic reticulum
(B) an increase in the concentration of cytosolic calcium ions prior to secretion
(C) synthesis of an amino-terminal signal sequence
(D) phosphorylation of a mannose residue in a glycoprotein
(E) trimming of N-linked oligosaccharides
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That is pretty simple. Question can be solved by just following common protein secretion pathway. That starts by transcription DNA's gene into RNA. Then that RNA — called matrix RNA, mRNA — caught by ribosome — which is actually RNA too, but ribosomal thus rRNA — and with assistance of different translation factors protein production begins (that is called translation mRNA into protein). Why secretion proteins are selected ones? That is because they have special signal at the beginning of polypeptide chain on N-terminal (which is actually some sequence at the beginning of mRNA, of course) which is caught by special cytoplasmic protein — Signal Recognition Particle or SRP. When SRP bind to that signal sequence translation stops and ribosome with mRNA and bound SRP flows to endoplasmic reticulum, where SRP-receptors are located. They bind SRP and passes signal through the lipid bilayer of ER. Then translation continues and protein get into ER lumen. After that happened, protein undergo different saccharides modifications. Pathway of Asn modification clearly described in Alberts book, includes trimming of N-linked oligosaccharides. Main steps of protein movement are: secretion in vesicle from ER to Goldgi apparatus and same movement through different compartments of Goldgi apparatus. After that vesicle with protein inside fuse into cell's membrane thus secreting protein into extracellular space.
So, I suppose that no calcium used in this pathway except signal transduction to muscle cells. So the answer is B.