The BECN1 N-terminal domain is intrinsically disordered Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • BECN1/Beclin 1 has a critical role in the early stages of autophagosome formation. Recently, structures of its central and C-terminal domains were reported, however, little structural information is available on the N-terminal domain, comprising a third of the protein. This lack of structural information largely stems from the inability to produce this region in a purified form. Here, we describe the expression and purification of the N-terminal domain of BECN1 (residues 1 to 150) and detailed biophysical characterization, including NMR spectroscopy. Combined, our studies demonstrated at the atomic level that the BECN1 N-terminal domain is intrinsically disordered, and apart from the BH3 subdomain, remains disordered following interaction with a binding partner, BCL2L1/BCL-XL. In addition, the BH3 domain α-helix induced upon interaction with BCL2L1 reverts to a disordered state when the complex is dissociated by exposure to a competitive inhibitor. No significant interactions between N- and C-terminal domains were detected.

publication date

  • 2016