Yeast-based directed-evolution for high-throughput structural stabilization of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs)

M. Meltzer, T. Zvagelsky, U. Hadad, Niv Papo, Stanislav Engel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The immense potential of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) as targets for drug discovery is not fully realized due to the enormous difficulties associated with structure elucidation of these profoundly unstable membrane proteins. The existing methods of GPCR stability-engineering are cumbersome and low-throughput; in addition, the scope of GPCRs that could benefit from these techniques is limited. Here, we present a yeast-based screening platform for a single-step isolation of GRCR variants stable in the presence of short-chain detergents, a feature essential for their successful crystallization using vapor diffusion method. The yeast detergent-resistant cell wall presents a unique opportunity for compartmentalization, to physically link the receptor's phenotype to its encoding DNA, and thus enable discovery of stable GPCR variants with unprecedent efficiency. The scope of mutations identified by the method reveals a surprising amenability of the GPCR scaffold to stabilization, and suggests an intriguing possibility of amending the stability properties of GPCR by varying the structural status of the C-terminus.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8657
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - 23 May 2022


  • Drug Discovery
  • Membrane Proteins/metabolism
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled/genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae/genetics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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