Endogenous epitope tagging of heat shock protein 70 isoform Hsc70 using CRISPR/Cas9
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Heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) is an evolutionarily well-conserved molecular chaperone involved in several cellular processes such as folding of proteins, modulating protein-protein interactions, and transport of proteins across the membrane. Binding partners of Hsp70 (known as “clients”) are identified on an individual basis as researchers discover their particular protein of interest binds to Hsp70. A full complement of Hsp70 interactors under multiple stress conditions remains to be determined. A promising approach to characterizing the Hsp70 “interactome” is the use of protein epitope tagging and then affinity purification followed by mass spectrometry (AP-MS/MS). AP-MS analysis is a widely used method to decipher protein-protein interaction networks and identifying protein functions. Conventionally, the proteins are overexpressed ectopically which interferes with protein complex stoichiometry, skewing AP-MS/MS data. In an attempt to solve this issue, we used CRISPR/Cas9-mediated gene editing to integrate a tandem-affinity (TAP) epitope tag into the genomic locus of HSC70. This system offers several benefits over existing expression systems including native expression, no requirement for selection, and homogeneity between cells. This cell line, freely available to chaperone researchers, will aid in small and large-scale protein interaction studies as well as the study of biochemical activities and structure-function relationships of the Hsc70 protein.
KeywordsHeat shock protein HSC70 CRISPR/Cas9 Genome-editing
The authors thank F. Zhang for providing materials used in this study and M. Mollapour for helpful comments. We thank C. Richardson and D. Dreau for their technical assistance. This project was supported by NCI R15CA208773.
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