Study of membrane orientation and glycosylated extracellular loops of mouse P-glycoprotein by in vitro translation

J. T. Zhang, V. Ling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

106 Scopus citations


Increased expression of P-glycoprotein (Pgp) has been demonstrated to cause multidrug resistance (MDR) in vitro, and it may be responsible for chemotherapy failure in a number of human cancers. Pgp is a plasma membrane protein thought to function as an energy-dependent drug transporter. From its deduced protein sequence the topology of Pgp was proposed to contain 12 transmembrane domains with six extracellular loops and two cytoplasmic ATP-binding sites. To investigate further the membrane orientation of Pgp, we have expressed a full length cDNA of mouse mdr 1, as well as its truncated forms, in a cell-free system supplemented with dog pancreatic microsomal membranes (RM). We determined which domains of the in vitro-synthesized Pgp had transversed the RM membranes by analyzing their resistance to protease digestion and their glycosylation state. To our surprise, this system revealed that a significant portion of in vitro-synthesized Pgp molecules has an additional glycosylated domain in the C-terminal half. Previously, only the first predicted extracellular loop near the N terminus had been thought to be glycosylated. Furthermore, we discovered that Pgp has at least two functional signal recognition particle/docking protein dependent signal sequences, one at the N-terminal half and the other at the C-terminal half. These findings suggest a new topological model for in vitro synthesized P-glycoprotein which may be relevant to its in vivo topology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18224-18232
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number27
StatePublished - Nov 8 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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