Orthorhombic Crystal Structure of Human Saposin C Dimer in Open Conformation
[SAP_HUMAN] Defects in PSAP are the cause of combined saposin deficiency (CSAPD) [MIM:611721]; also known as prosaposin deficiency. CSAPD is due to absence of all saposins, leading to a fatal storage disorder with hepatosplenomegaly and severe neurological involvement.  Defects in PSAP saposin-B region are the cause of leukodystrophy metachromatic due to saposin-B deficiency (MLD-SAPB) [MIM:249900]. MLD-SAPB is an atypical form of metachromatic leukodystrophy. It is characterized by tissue accumulation of cerebroside-3-sulfate, demyelination, periventricular white matter abnormalities, peripheral neuropathy. Additional neurological features include dysarthria, ataxic gait, psychomotr regression, seizures, cognitive decline and spastic quadriparesis. Defects in PSAP saposin-C region are the cause of atypical Gaucher disease (AGD) [MIM:610539]. Affected individuals have marked glucosylceramide accumulation in the spleen without having a deficiency of glucosylceramide-beta glucosidase characteristic of classic Gaucher disease, a lysosomal storage disorder.  Defects in PSAP saposin-A region are the cause of atypical Krabbe disease (AKRD) [MIM:611722]. AKRD is a disorder of galactosylceramide metabolism. AKRD features include progressive encephalopathy and abnormal myelination in the cerebral white matter resembling Krabbe disease. Note=Defects in PSAP saposin-D region are found in a variant of Tay-Sachs disease (GM2-gangliosidosis).
[SAP_HUMAN] The lysosomal degradation of sphingolipids takes place by the sequential action of specific hydrolases. Some of these enzymes require specific low-molecular mass, non-enzymic proteins: the sphingolipids activator proteins (coproteins). Saposin-A and saposin-C stimulate the hydrolysis of glucosylceramide by beta-glucosylceramidase (EC 22.214.171.124) and galactosylceramide by beta-galactosylceramidase (EC 126.96.36.199). Saposin-C apparently acts by combining with the enzyme and acidic lipid to form an activated complex, rather than by solubilizing the substrate. Saposin-B stimulates the hydrolysis of galacto-cerebroside sulfate by arylsulfatase A (EC 188.8.131.52), GM1 gangliosides by beta-galactosidase (EC 184.108.40.206) and globotriaosylceramide by alpha-galactosidase A (EC 220.127.116.11). Saposin-B forms a solubilizing complex with the substrates of the sphingolipid hydrolases. Saposin-D is a specific sphingomyelin phosphodiesterase activator (EC 18.104.22.168).
Publication Abstract from PubMed
Human saposins are essential proteins required for degradation of sphingolipids and lipid antigen presentation. Despite the conserved structural organization of saposins, their distinct modes of interaction with biological membranes are not fully understood. We describe two crystal structures of human saposin C in an "open" configuration with unusual domain swapped homodimers. This form of SapC dimer supports the "clip-on" model for SapC-induced vesicle fusion. In addition, we present the crystal structure of SapD in two crystal forms. They reveal the monomer-monomer interface for the SapD dimer, which was confirmed in solution by analytical ultracentrifugation. The crystal structure of SapD suggests that side chains of Lys10 and Arg17 are involved in initial association with the preferred anionic biological membranes by forming salt bridges with sulfate or phosphate lipid headgroups.
Crystal structures of human saposins C andD: implications for lipid recognition and membrane interactions.,Rossmann M, Schultz-Heienbrok R, Behlke J, Remmel N, Alings C, Sandhoff K, Saenger W, Maier T Structure. 2008 May;16(5):809-17. PMID:18462685
From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.