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Elisa Dell'Aglio

Regulation of plastid protein Calmodulin

Published on 29 November 2013

Thesis presented November 29, 2013

Abstract :
Calmodulin (CaM) is an important modulator of cell responses of eukaryotes. This protein is composed of four calcium (Ca2+)-binding sites and a flexible central helix. CaM can interact with other proteins in a Ca2+-dependent way. This leads to a wide variety of effects, such as activation/inhibition of enzymes, opening of membrane channels and regulation of protein trafficking.
The identification of high-affinity CaM targets requires techniques allowing the study of the CaM-binding parameters of a large number of protein, and in several conditions mimicking the cell environment (e.g. presence of ligands or other proteins).
The first objective of this PhD was to develop flexible and quantitative assays of CaM-partners interactions based on measurements of fluorescence anisotropy. these tests were used to perform a quantitative characterization of the interaction between CaM and two previously identified targets located in Arabidopsis chloroplast (NADK2 and Tic32). We then performed a high-throughput analysis (CaM-affinity chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry) in order to detect new potential plastidial CaM targets. We validated our approach with several biochemical techniques. We finally focused our attention on the ceQORH protein, whose high CaM affinity was confirmed by several tests. Our results confirm the Ca2+-dependent CaM affinity of NADK2, Tic32 and ceQORH and provide new elements for understanding the effects of these interactions.
In addition, in order to verify the presence of CaMs or CaM-like proteins in the chloroplast, we used a biochemical and proteomic approach. We also studied the intracellular localization of some putative plastidial CMLs tagged with GFP in Arabidopsis protoplasts. For the moment, these approaches did not allow identifying such proteins in the chloroplast.

Calmodulin, NAD kinase, Fluorescence anisotropy, ceQORH, biochemistry, chloroplast

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