The Cytosolic Domains of Ca2+-sensitive Adenylyl Cyclases Dictate Their Targeting to Plasma Membrane Lipid Rafts*

  1. Dermot M. F. Cooper
  1. Department of Pharmacology, University of Cambridge, Tennis Court Rd., Cambridge, CB2 1PD, United Kingdom, §Pharmaceutical Biochemistry, Institute of Pharmacy, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany, and the Department of Pharmacology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Centre, Denver, Colorado 80262
  1. To whom correspondence should be addressed. Tel.: 44-1223-334063; Fax: 44-1223-334040; E-mail: dmfc2{at}


Lipid rafts are specialized, cholesterol-rich domains of the plasma membrane that are enriched in certain signaling proteins, including Ca2+-sensitive adenylyl cyclases. This restrictive localization plays a key role in the regulation of the Ca2+-stimulable AC8 and the Ca2+-inhibitable AC6 by capacitative calcium entry. Interestingly, AC7, a Ca2+-insensitive AC, is found in the plasma membrane but is excluded from lipid rafts (Smith, K. E., Gu, C., Fagan, K. A., Hu, B., and Cooper, D. M. F. (2002) J. Biol. Chem. 277, 6025–6031). The mechanisms governing the specific membrane targeting of adenylyl cyclase isoforms remain unknown. To address this issue, a series of chimeras were produced between the raft-targeted AC5 and the non-raft-targeted AC7, involving switching of their major domains. The AC5-AC7 chimeras were expressed in HEK 293 cells and lipid rafts were isolated from the bulk plasma membrane by either detergent-based or non-detergent-based fractionation methods. Additionally, confocal imaging was used to investigate the precise cellular targeting of the chimeras. Surprisingly, the two tandem six-transmembrane domains of AC5 were not required for localization to lipid rafts. Rather, AC5 localization depended on the complete cytoplasmic loops (C1 and C2); constructs with mixed domains were either retained in the endoplasmic reticulum or degraded. Similar conclusions are drawn for the lipid raft localization of the Ca2+/calmodulin-stimulable AC8; again, the C1 and C2 domains are critical. Thus, protein-protein interactions may be more important than protein-lipid interactions in targeting these calcium-sensitive enzymes to lipid rafts.

  • Received October 22, 2004.
  • Revision received November 29, 2004.
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This Article

  1. The Journal of Biological Chemistry 280, 6380-6391.
  1. All Versions of this Article:
    1. M411987200v1
    2. 280/8/6380 (most recent)

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