Journal article

Kinetics of the initial steps of G protein-coupled receptor-mediated cellular signaling revealed by single-molecule imaging

We report on an in vivo single-mol. study of the signaling kinetics of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) performed using the neurokinin 1 receptor (NK1R) as a representative member. The NK1R signaling cascade is triggered by the specific binding of a fluorescently labeled agonist, substance P (SP). The diffusion of single receptor-ligand complexes in plasma membrane of living HEK 293 cells is imaged using fast single-mol. wide-field fluorescence microscopy at 100 ms time resoln. Diffusion trajectories are obtained which show intra- and intertrace heterogeneity in the diffusion mode. To investigate universal patterns in the diffusion trajectories we take the ligand-binding event as the common starting point. This synchronization allows us to observe changes in the character of the ligand-receptor-complex diffusion. Specifically, we find that the diffusion of ligand-receptor complexes is slowed down significantly and becomes more constrained as a function of time during the first 1000 ms. The decelerated and more constrained diffusion is attributed to an increasing interaction of the GPCR with cellular structures after the ligand-receptor complex is formed. [on SciFinder (R)]


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