Identification of novel target proteins of cyclic GMP signaling pathways using chemical proteomics

Euikyung Kim, Ji Man Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


For deciphering the cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) signaling pathway, we employed chemical proteomics to identify the novel target molecules of cGMP. We used cGMP that was immobilized onto agarose beads with linkers directed at three different positions of cGMP. We performed a pull-down assay using the beads as baits on tissue lysates and identified 9 proteins by MALDI-TOF (Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Time-of-Flight) mass spectrometry. Some of the identified proteins were previously known cGMP targets, including cGMP-dependent protein kinase and cGMP-stimulated phosphodiesterase. Surprisingly, some of the coprecipitated proteins were never formerly reported to associate with the cGMP signaling pathway. The competition binding assays showed that the interactions are not by nonspecific binding to either the linker or bead itself, but by specific binding to cGMP. Furthermore, we observed that the interactions are highly specific to cGMP against other nucleotides, such as cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) and 5′-GMP, which are structurally similar to cGMP. As one of the identified targets, MAPK1 was confirmed by immunoblotting with an anti-MAPK1 antibody. For further proof, we observed that the membrane-permeable cGMP (8-bromo cyclic GMP) stimulated mitogen-activated protein kinase 1 signaling in the treated cells. Our present study suggests that chemical proteomics can be a very useful and powerful technique for identifying the target proteins of small bioactive molecules.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-304
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 31 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Agarose bead
  • Chemical immobilization
  • Competition binding
  • Cyclic GMP
  • MALDI mass spectrometry


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