Tag Archives: lipids

An engineered thermal-shift screen reveals specific lipid preferences of eukaryotic and prokaryotic membrane proteins

Emmanuel Nji, Yurie Chatzikyriakidou, Michael Landreh & David Drew

Membrane bilayers are made up of a myriad of different lipids that regulate the functional activity, stability, and oligomerization of many membrane proteins. Despite their importance, screening the structural and functional impact of lipid–protein interactions to identify specific lipid requirements remains a major challenge. Read more

The artificial cell: biology-inspired compartmentalization of chemical function

Royal Society Publishing has recently published a special issue of Interface Focus entitled “The artificial cell: biology-inspired compartmentalization of chemical function”, organised by Paul A Beales, Barbara Ciani and Stephen Mann.

This issue is based on a Royal Society Theo Murphy meeting held on the 26–27 February 2018. The articles reveal the rich diversity of research currently being undertaken in the field of artificial cell design and construction, and highlight the challenges that lie ahead.

The articles are FREE TO ACCESS here.

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Converting Escherichia coli into an archaebacterium with a hybrid heterochiral membrane

Escherichia coli has been engineered toward an archaebacterium with an unprecedented high level of archaeal ether phospholipids. The obtained cells stably maintain a mixed heterochiral membrane. This finding challenges theories that assume that intrinsic instability of mixed membranes led to the “lipid divide” and the subsequent differentiation of bacteria and archaea. Furthermore, this study paves the way for future membrane engineering of industrial production organisms with improved robustness. Read more

Membrane engineering via trans unsaturated fatty acids production improves Escherichia coli robustness and production of biorenewables

Membrane engineering via trans unsaturated fatty acids production improves Escherichia coli robustness and production of biorenewables

Constructing microbial biocatalysts that produce biorenewables at economically viable yields and titers is often hampered by product toxicity. For production of short chain fatty acids, membrane damage is considered the primary mechanism of toxicity, particularly in regards to membrane integrity. Previous engineering efforts in Escherichia coli to increase membrane integrity, with the goal of increasing fatty acid tolerance and production, have had mixed results. Herein, a novel approach was used to reconstruct the E. coli membrane by enabling production of a novel membrane component. Specifically, trans unsaturated fatty acids (TUFA) were produced and incorporated into the membrane of E. coli MG1655 by expression of cis-trans isomerase (Cti) from Pseudomonas aeruginosa. While the engineered strain was found to have no increase in membrane integrity, a significant decrease in membrane fluidity was observed, meaning that membrane polarization and rigidity were increased by TUFA incorporation. As a result, tolerance to exogenously added octanoic acid and production of octanoic acid were both increased relative to the wild-type strain. This membrane engineering strategy to improve octanoic acid tolerance was found to require fine-tuning of TUFA abundance. Besides improving tolerance and production of carboxylic acids, TUFA production also enabled increased tolerance in E. coli to other bio-products, e.g. alcohols, organic acids, aromatic compounds, a variety of adverse industrial conditions, e.g. low pH, high temperature, and also elevated styrene production, another versatile bio-chemical product. TUFA permitted enhanced growth due to alleviation of bio-product toxicity, demonstrating the general effectiveness of this membrane engineering strategy towards improving strain robustness.

Read the full article here.

How drugs get into cells: tested and testable predictions to help discriminate between transporter-mediated uptake and lipoidal bilayer diffusion

ABSTRACT:
One approach to experimental science involves creating hypotheses, then testing them by varying one or more independent variables and assessing the effects of this variation on the processes of interest. We use this strategy to compare the intellectual status and available evidence for two models or views of mechanisms of transmembrane drug transport into intact biological cells. One (BDII) asserts that lipoidal phospholipid Bilayer Diffusion Is Important, while a second (PBIN) proposes that in normal intact cells Phospholipid Bilayer diffusion Is Negligible (i.e. may be neglected quantitatively), because evolution selected against it, and with transmembrane drug transport being effected by genetically encoded proteinaceous carriers or pores, whose ‘natural’ biological roles and substrates are based in intermediary metabolism. Despite a recent review elsewhere, we can find no evidence able to support BDII as we can find no experiments in intact cells in which phospholipid bilayer diffusion was either varied independently or measured directly (although there are many papers where it was inferred by seeing a covariation of other dependent variables). By contrast, we find an abundance of evidence showing cases in which changes in the activities of named and genetically identified transporters led to measurable changes in the rate or extent of drug uptake. PBIN also has considerable predictive power, and accounts readily for the large differences in drug uptake between tissues, cells and species, in accounting for the metabolite-likeness of marketed drugs, in pharmacogenomics, and in providing a straightforward explanation for the late-stage appearance of toxicity and of lack of efficacy during drug discovery programmes despite macroscopically adequate pharmacokinetics. Consequently, the view that Phospholipid Bilayer diffusion Is Negligible (PBIN) provides a starting hypothesis for assessing cellular drug uptake that is much better supported by the available evidence.

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Applications of Lipid based Formulation Technologies in the Delivery of Biotechnology-based Therapeutics

ABSTRACT:
In the last decades several new biotechnologically-based therapeutics have been developed due to progress in genetic engineering. A growing challenge facing pharmaceutical scientists is formulating these compounds into oral dosage forms with adequate bioavailability. An increasingly popular approach to formulate biotechnology-based therapeutics is the use of lipid based formulation technologies. This review highlights the importance of lipid based drug delivery systems in the formulation of oral biotechnology based therapeutics including peptides, proteins, DNA, siRNA and vaccines. The different production procedures used to achieve high encapsulation efficiencies of the bioactives are discussed, as well as the factors influencing the choice of excipient. Lipid based colloidal drug delivery systems including liposomes and solid lipid nanoparticles are reviewed with a focus on recent advances and updates. We further describe microemulsions and self-emulsifying drug delivery systems and recent findings on bioactive delivery. We conclude the review with a few examples on novel lipid based formulation technologies.

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