Progesterone receptor membrane component 1 (PGRMC1) binds and stabilizes cytochromes P450 through a heme-independent mechanism

Meredith R. McGuire, Debaditya Mukhopadhyay, Stephanie L. Myers, Eric P. osher, Rita T. Brookheart, Kai Kammers, Alfica Sehgal, Ebru S. Selen, Michael J. Wolfgang, Namandjé N. Bumpus, Peter J. Espenshade

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23 Scopus citations


Progesterone receptor membrane component 1 (PGRMC1) is a heme-binding protein implicated in a wide range of cellular functions. We previously showed that PGRMC1 binds to cytochromes P450 in yeast and mammalian cells and supports their activity. Recently, the paralog PGRMC2 was shown to function as a heme chaperone. The extent of PGRMC1 function in cytochrome P450 biology and whether PGRMC1 is also a heme chaperone are unknown. Here, we examined the function of Pgrmc1 in mouse liver using a knockout model and found that Pgrmc1 binds and stabilizes a broad range of cytochromes P450 in a heme-independent manner. Proteomic and transcriptomic studies demonstrated that Pgrmc1 binds more than 13 cytochromes P450 and supports maintenance of cytochrome P450 protein levels posttranscriptionally. In vitro assays confirmed that Pgrmc1 KO livers exhibit reduced cytochrome P450 activity consistent with reduced enzyme levels. Mechanistic studies in cultured cells demonstrated that PGRMC1 stabilizes cytochromes P450 and that binding and stabilization do not require PGRMC1 binding to heme. Importantly, Pgrmc1-dependent stabilization of cytochromes P450 is physiologically relevant, as Pgrmc1 deletion protected mice from acetaminophen-induced liver injury. Finally, evaluation of Y113F mutant Pgrmc1, which lacks the axial heme iron-coordinating hydroxyl group, revealed that proper iron coordination is not required for heme binding, but is required for binding to ferrochelatase, the final enzyme in heme biosynthesis. PGRMC1 was recently identified as the causative mutation in X-linked isolated pediatric cataract formation. Together, these results demonstrate a heme-independent function for PGRMC1 in cytochrome P450 stability that may underlie clinical phenotypes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101316
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1 2021


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