α-Crystallin chaperone mimetic drugs inhibit lens γ-crystallin aggregation: Potential role for cataract prevention

Sidra Islam, Michael T. Do, Brett S. Frank, Grant L. Hom, Samuel Wheeler, Hisashi Fujioka, Benlian Wang, Geeta Minocha, David R. Sell, Xingjun Fan, Kirsten J. Lampi, Vincent M. Monnier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Γ-Crystallins play a major role in age-related lens transparency. Their destabilization by mutations and physical chemical insults are associated with cataract formation. Therefore, drugs that increase their stability should have anticataract properties. To this end, we screened 2560 Federal Drug Agency–approved drugs and natural compounds for their ability to suppress or worsen H2O2 and/or heat-mediated aggregation of bovine γ-crystallins. The top two drugs, closantel (C), an antihelminthic drug, and gambogic acid (G), a xanthonoid, attenuated thermal-induced protein unfolding and aggregation as shown by turbidimetry fluorescence spectroscopy dynamic light scattering and electron microscopy of human or mouse recombinant crystallins. Furthermore, binding studies using fluorescence inhibition and hydrophobic pocket–binding molecule bis-8-anilino-1-naphthalene sulfonic acid revealed static binding of C and G to hydrophobic sites with medium-to-low affinity. Molecular docking to HγD and other γ-crystallins revealed two binding sites, one in the “NC pocket” (residues 50–150) of HγD and one spanning the “NC tail” (residues 56–61 to 168–174 in the C-terminal domain). Multiple binding sites overlap with those of the protective mini αA-crystallin chaperone MAC peptide. Mechanistic studies using bis-8-anilino-1-naphthalene sulfonic acid as a proxy drug showed that it bound to MAC sites, improved Tm of both H2O2 oxidized and native human gamma D, and suppressed turbidity of oxidized HγD, most likely by trapping exposed hydrophobic sites. The extent to which these drugs act as α-crystallin mimetics and reduce cataract progression remains to be demonstrated. This study provides initial insights into binding properties of C and G to γ-crystallins.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102417
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume298
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2022

Keywords

  • aging
  • diabetes
  • drug repurposing
  • fluorescence spectroscopy
  • glycation
  • oxidation
  • unfolding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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