Cryo–electron microscopy structure of the antidiuretic hormone arginine-vasopressin V2 receptor signaling complex

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Science Advances  21 May 2021:
Vol. 7, no. 21, eabg5628
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abg5628


The antidiuretic hormone arginine-vasopressin (AVP) forms a signaling complex with the V2 receptor (V2R) and the Gs protein, promoting kidney water reabsorption. Molecular mechanisms underlying activation of this critical G protein–coupled receptor (GPCR) signaling system are still unknown. To fill this gap of knowledge, we report here the cryo–electron microscopy structure of the AVP-V2R-Gs complex. Single-particle analysis revealed the presence of three different states. The two best maps were combined with computational and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy constraints to reconstruct two structures of the ternary complex. These structures differ in AVP and Gs binding modes. They reveal an original receptor-Gs interface in which the Gαs subunit penetrates deep into the active V2R. The structures help to explain how V2R R137H or R137L/C variants can lead to two severe genetic diseases. Our study provides important structural insights into the function of this clinically relevant GPCR signaling complex.

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