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Biochemical enrichment and biophysical characterization of a taste receptor for L-arginine from the catfish, Ictalurus puntatus

DOI: 10.1186/1471-2202-5-25

Keywords: Chemical senses, Taste, Signal transduction, Lectin, Ion channel, Receptor, Immunohistochemistry, Protein purification, Lipid bilayer

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Abstract:

Both PHA-E and RCA-I almost exclusively labeled an 82–84 kDa protein band of an SDS-PAGE of solubilized barbel taste epithelial membranes. Further, both rhodamine-conjugated RCA-I and polyclonal antibodies raised to the 82–84 kDa electroeluted peptides labeled the apical region of catfish taste buds. Because of the specificity shown by RCA-I, lectin affinity was chosen as the first of a three-step procedure designed to enrich the presumed LGICR for L-Arg. Purified and CHAPS-solubilized taste epithelial membrane proteins were subjected successively to (1), lectin (RCA-I) affinity; (2), gel filtration (Sephacryl S-300HR); and (3), ion exchange chromatography. All fractions from each chromatography step were evaluated for L-Arg-induced ion channel activity by reconstituting each fraction into a lipid bilayer. Active fractions demonstrated L-Arg-induced channel activity that was inhibited by D-arginine (D-Arg) with kinetics nearly identical to those reported earlier for L-Arg-stimulated ion channels of native barbel membranes reconstituted into lipid bilayers. After the final enrichment step, SDS-PAGE of the active ion channel protein fraction revealed a single band at 82–84 kDa which may be interpreted as a component of a multimeric receptor/channel complex.The data are consistent with the supposition that the L-Arg receptor is a LGICR. This taste receptor remains active during biochemical enrichment procedures. This is the first report of enrichment of an active LGICR from the taste system of vertebrata.The initial event in taste transduction involves recognition of taste stimuli by plasma membrane-associated receptor proteins. These proteins are concentrated at the apical end of specialized neuro-epithelial cells (taste cells) found within multicellular end-organs known as taste buds [1,2]. The recognition binding sites for most taste stimuli face the exterior environment. The interaction of a taste stimulus with this recognition site triggers a chain of metabolic an

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