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Effect of the Organization of Rhodopsin on the Association between Transducin and a Photoactivated Receptor

Ramirez, Samuel A., Leidy, Chad
The Journal of physical chemistry 2018 v.122 no.38 pp. 8872-8879
G-protein coupled receptors, G-proteins, Monte Carlo method, crystals, microscopy, phototransduction, physical chemistry, probability, rhodopsin
After photoactivation, rhodopsin (R), a G-protein-coupled receptor, rapidly activates multiple transducin G-proteins (G) in an initial amplification step of phototransduction. G-protein activation requires diffusion-mediated association with an active rhodopsin (R*) at the rod disk membrane. Different organizations of R within the membrane have been revealded by several microscopy studies, including static and freely diffusing situations. However, it is unclear how such different scenarios influence the activation rate of G proteins. Through Monte Carlo simulations, we study the association reaction between a photoactivated rhodopsin and transducin under different reported receptor organizations including (a) R monomers diffusing freely, (b) R forming static dispersed crystalline domains made of rows of dimers, and (c) R arranged in static tracks formed by two adjacent rows of dimers. A key parameter in our simulations is the probability of binding following a collision (p). For high p, the association rate between R* and G is higher in the freely diffusive system than in the static organizations, but for low collision efficiencies, the static organizations can result in faster association rates than the mobile system. We also observe that with low p, increasing the concentration of R increases the association rate significantly in the dispersed crystals configuration and just slightly in the free diffusive system. In summary, the lateral organization of rhodopsin influences the association rate between R* and G in a manner strongly dependent on the collision efficiency.