Unstructured regions of large enzymatic complexes control the availability of metabolites with signaling functions
Cell Communication and Signaling
Metabolites produced via traditional biochemical processes affect intracellular communication, inflammation, and malignancy. Unexpectedly, acetyl-CoA, α-ketoglutarate and palmitic acid, which are chemical species of reactions catalyzed by highly abundant, gigantic enzymatic complexes, dubbed as "metabolons", have broad "nonmetabolic" signaling functions. Conserved unstructured regions within metabolons determine the yield of these metabolites. Unstructured regions tether functional protein
... ns, act as spatial constraints to confine constituent enzyme communication, and, in the case of acetyl-CoA production, tend to be regulated by intricate phosphorylation patterns. This review presents the multifaceted roles of these three significant metabolites and describes how their perturbation leads to altered or transformed cellular function. Their dedicated enzymatic systems are then introduced, namely, the pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) and oxoglutarate dehydrogenase (OGDH) complexes, and the fatty acid synthase (FAS), with a particular focus on their structural characterization and the localization of unstructured regions. Finally, upstream metabolite regulation, in which spatial occupancy of unstructured regions within dedicated metabolons may affect metabolite availability and subsequently alter cell functions, is discussed. Video abstract.