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Formyl peptide derived lipopeptides disclose differences between the receptors in mouse and men and call the pepducin concept in question

Journal article
Authors Malene Winther
André Holdfeldt
Martina Sundqvist
Zahra Rajabkhani
Michael Gabl
Johan Bylund
Claes Dahlgren
Huamei Forsman
Published in Plos One
Volume 12
Issue 9
ISSN 1932-6203
Publication year 2017
Published at Institute of Medicine, Department of Rheumatology and Inflammation Research
Institute of Odontology, Section 3
Language en
Keywords protein-coupled receptors, human neutrophils, respiratory burst, nadph-oxidase, activation, inflammation, ligand, fpr2, modulation, phagocytes, Science & Technology - Other Topics
Subject categories Rheumatology and Autoimmunity


A pepducin is a lipopeptide containing a peptide sequence that is identical to one of the intracellular domains of the G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) assumed to be the target. Neutrophils express two closely related formyl peptide receptors belonging to the family of GPCRs; FPR1 and FPR2 in human and their respective orthologue Fpr1 and Fpr2 in mouse. By applying the pepducin concept, we have earlier identified FPR2 activating pepducins generated from the third intracellular loop of FPR2. The third intracellular loop of FPR2 differs in two amino acids from that of FPR1, seven from Fpr2 and three from Fpr1. Despite this, we found that pepducins generated from FPR1, FPR2, Fpr1 and Fpr2 all targeted FPR2 in human neutrophils and Fpr2 in mouse, but with different modulating outcomes. Whereas the FPR1/Fpr1 derived pepducins inhibited the FPR2 function in human neutrophils, they activated Fpr2 in mouse. The FPR2 derived pepducin activated FPR2/Fpr2, whereas the pepducin generated from Fpr2 inhibited both FPR2 and Fpr2. In summary, our data demonstrate that pepducins generated from the third intracellular loop of human FPR1/2 and mouse Fpr1/2, all targeted FPR2 in human and Fpr2 in mouse. With respect to the modulating outcomes, pepducin inhibitors identified for FPR2 are in fact activators for Fpr2 in mouse neutrophils. Our data thus questions the validity of pepducin concept regarding their receptor selectivity but supports the notion that FPR2/Fpr2 may recognize a lipopeptide molecular pattern, and highlight the differences in ligand recognition profile between FPR2 and its mouse orthologue Fpr2.

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