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Cell cycle regulation of mitochondrial protein import revealed by genome-scale pooled bimolecular fluorescence complementation screening

By Kim Blakely, Patricia Mero, Roland Arnold, Ayesha Saleem, Christine Misquitta, Dahlia Kasimer, Sachin Kumar, Andrea Uetrecht, Kevin A Brown, Alessandro Datti, David Hood, Philip Kim, Jason Moffat

Posted 16 Sep 2019
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/770669

A central focus of systems biology is the functional mapping of protein-protein interactions under physiological conditions. Here we describe MaGiCaL-BiFC, a lentivirus-based bimolecular fluorescence protein-fragment complementation approach for the high-throughput, genome-scale identification of protein-protein interactions in mammalian cells. After developing and validating this methodology using known protein-protein interaction pairs, we constructed genome-scale pooled BiFC libraries using the human ORFeome cDNA collection. These pooled libraries, containing ~ 12,000 unique human cDNAs, were used to screen for candidate interaction partners of the mitochondrial transmembrane protein TOMM22. Following infection of cells with the TOMM22 bait and the pooled cDNA libraries, cells harboring candidate TOMM22 interacting proteins were isolated from the cell pool via fluorescence activated cell sorting, and identified via microarray analysis. This approach identified several known interaction partners of TOMM22, as well as novel physical and functional partners that link the mitochondrial network to proteins involved in diverse cellular processes. Notably, protein kinase CK2 was identified as a novel physical interaction partner of human TOMM22. We found that this association occurs preferentially during mitosis and involves direct phosphorylation of TOMM22, an event that may lead to attenuation of mitochondrial protein import. Together, this data contributes to the growing body of evidence suggesting eloquent coordination between cell cycle progression and mitochondrial physiology. Importantly, through high-throughput screening and focused validation, our study demonstrates the power of the MaGiCaL-BiFC approach to uncover novel functional protein-protein interactions, including those involving proteins with membrane-spanning domains, or of a transient nature, all within their native cellular environment.

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