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ANNEE : 2022

Ganglioside binding domains in proteins: Physiological and pathological mechanisms

AUTEURS : Azzaz F, Yahi N, Di Scala C, Chahinian H, Fantini J.

REVUE : Advances in Protein Chemistry and Structural Biology
Gangliosides are anionic lipids that form condensed membrane clusters (lipid rafts) and exert major regulatory functions on a wide range of proteins. In this review, we propose a new view of the structural features of gangliosides with special emphasis on emerging properties associated with protein binding modes. We analyze the different possibilities of molecular associations of gangliosides in lipid rafts and the role of cholesterol in this organization. We are particularly interested in amide groups of N-acetylated sugars which make it possible to neutralize the negative charge of the carboxylate group of sialic acids. We refer to this effect as "NH trick" and we demonstrate that it is operative in GM1, GD1a, GD1b and GT1b gangliosides. The NH trick is key to understand the different topologies adopted by gangliosides (chalice-like at the edge of lipid rafts, condensed clusters in central areas) and their impact on protein binding. We define three major types of ganglioside-binding domains (GBDs): α-helical, loop shaped, and large flat surface. We describe the mode of interaction of each GBD with typical reference proteins: synaptotagmin, 5HT1A receptor, cholera and botulinum toxins, HIV-1 surface envelope glycoprotein gp120, SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, cellular prion protein, Alzheimer's β-amyloid peptide and Parkinson's disease associated α-synuclein. We discuss the common mechanisms and peculiarities of protein binding to gangliosides in the light of physiological and pathological conditions. We anticipate that innovative ganglioside-based therapies will soon show an exponential growth for the treatment of cancer, microbial infections, and neurodegenerative diseases.