Thermodynamic mapping of effector protein interfaces with RalA and RalB.
RalA and RalB are members of the Ras family of small G proteins and are activated downstream of Ras via RalGEFs. The RalGEF-Ral axis represents one of the major effector pathways controlled by Ras and as such is an important pharmacological target. RalA and RalB are approximately 80% identical at the amino acid level; despite this, they have distinct roles both in normal cells and in the disease state. We have used our structure of RalB-RLIP76 to guide an analysis of Ral-effector interaction interfaces, creating panels of mutant proteins to probe the energetics of these interactions. The data provide a physical mechanism that underpins the effector selective mutations commonly employed to dissect Ral G protein function. Comparing the energetic landscape of the RalB-RLIP76 and RalB-Sec5 complexes reveals mutations in RalB that lead to differential binding of the two effector proteins. A panel of RLIP76 mutants was used to probe the interaction between RLIP76 and RalA and -B. Despite 100% sequence identity in the RalA and -B contact residues with RLIP76, differences still exist in the energetic profiles of the two complexes. Therefore, we have revealed properties that may account for some of the functional separation observed with RalA and RalB at the cellular level. Our mutations, in both the Ral isoforms and RLIP76, provide new tools that can be employed to parse the complex biology of Ral G protein signaling networks. The combination of these thermodynamic and structural data can also guide efforts to ablate RalA and -B activity with small molecules and peptides.
Medical Research Council (MR/J007803/1)
Cancer Research Uk (None)