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Differential Interactions of the Proteasome Inhibitor PI31 with Constitutive and Immuno-20S Proteasomes.

Biochemistry 2024 April 6
PI31 (Proteasome Inhibitor of 31,000 Da) is a 20S proteasome binding protein originally identified as an in vitro inhibitor of 20S proteasome proteolytic activity. Recently reported cryo-electron microscopy structures of 20S-PI31 complexes have revealed that the natively disordered proline-rich C-terminus of PI31 enters the central chamber in the interior of the 20S proteasome and interacts directly with the proteasome's multiple catalytic threonine residues in a manner predicted to inhibit their enzymatic function while evading its own proteolysis. Higher eukaryotes express an alternative form of the 20S proteasome (termed "immuno-proteasome") that features genetically and functionally distinct catalytic subunits. The effect of PI31 on immuno-proteasome function is unknown. We examine the relative inhibitory effects of PI31 on purified constitutive (20Sc) and immuno-(20Si) 20S proteasomes in vitro and show that PI31 inhibits 20Si hydrolytic activity to a significantly lesser degree than that of 20Sc. Unlike 20Sc, 20Si hydrolyzes the carboxyl-terminus of PI31 and this effect contributes to the reduced inhibitory activity of PI31 toward 20Si. Conversely, loss of 20Sc inhibition by PI31 point mutants leads to PI31 degradation by 20Sc. These results demonstrate unexpected differential interactions of PI31 with 20Sc and 20Si and document their functional consequences.

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