GRIN1 regulates μ-opioid receptor activities by tethering the receptor and G protein in the lipid raft

Xin Ge, Yu Qiu, Horace H Loh, Ping-Yee Law

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


The lipid raft location of μ-opioid receptor (MOR) determines the receptor activities. However, the manner in which MOR is anchored within the lipid rafts is undetermined. Using the targeted proteomic approach and mass spectrometry analyses, we have identified GRIN1 (G protein-regulated inducer of neurite outgrowth 1) can tether MOR with the G protein α-subunit and subsequently regulate the receptor distribution within the lipid rafts. Glutathione S-transferase fusion pulldown and receptor mutational analyses indicate that GRIN1-MOR interaction involves a receptor sequence 267GSKEK271 within the MOR third intracellular loop that is not involved in Gα interaction. The GRIN1 domains involved in MOR interaction are also distinct from those involved in Gα interaction. Pertussis toxin pretreatment reduced the amount of GRIN1 co-immunoprecipitated with MOR but not the amount with Gα. Furthermore, overexpression of GRIN1 significantly enhanced the amount of MOR in lipid raft and the receptor signaling magnitude as measured by Src kinase activation. Such increase in MOR signaling was demonstrated further by determining the GRIN1-dependent pertussis toxin-sensitive neurite outgrowth. In contrast to minimal neurite outgrowth induced by etorphine in control neuroblastoma N2A cells, overexpression of GRIN1 resulted in the increase in etorphine- and non-morphine-induced neurite outgrowth in these cells. Knocking down endogenous GRIN1 by small interfering RNA attenuated the agonist-induced neurite outgrowth. Disrupting lipid raft by methyl-β-cyclodextrin also blocked neurite outgrowth. Hence, by tethering Gα with MOR, GRIN1 stabilizes the receptor within the lipid rafts and potentiates the receptor signaling in the neurite outgrowth processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36521-36534
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number52
StatePublished - Dec 25 2009


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