Lysine lactoylation is a recently described protein post-translational modification (PTM). However, the biochemical pathways responsible for this acylation remain unclear. Two metabolite-dependent mechanisms have been proposed: enzymatic histone lysine lactoylation derived from lactoyl-coenzyme A (lactoyl-CoA, also termed lactyl-CoA), and non-enzymatic lysine lactoylation resulting from acyl-transfer via lactoyl-glutathione. While the former has precedent in the form of enzyme-catalysed lysine acylation, the lactoyl-CoA metabolite has not been previously quantified in mammalian systems. Here, we use liquid chromatography-high-resolution mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS) together with a synthetic standard to detect and validate the presence of lactoyl-CoA in cell and tissue samples. Conducting a retrospective analysis of data from previously analysed samples revealed the presence of lactoyl-CoA in diverse cell and tissue contexts. In addition, we describe a biosynthetic route to generate 13C315N1-isotopically labelled lactoyl-CoA, providing a co-eluting internal standard for analysis of this metabolite. We estimate lactoyl-CoA concentrations of 1.14 × 10-8 pmol per cell in cell culture and 0.0172 pmol mg-1 tissue wet weight in mouse heart. These levels are similar to crotonyl-CoA, but between 20 and 350 times lower than predominant acyl-CoAs such as acetyl-, propionyl- and succinyl-CoA. Overall our studies provide the first quantitative measurements of lactoyl-CoA in metazoans, and provide a methodological foundation for the interrogation of this novel metabolite in biology and disease.
Recommended CitationVarner, Erika L; Trefely, Sophie; Bartee, David; von Krusenstiern, Eliana; Izzo, Luke; Bekeova, Carmen; O'Connor, Roddy S; Seifert, Erin L; Wellen, Kathryn E; Meier, Jordan L; and Snyder, Nathaniel W, "Quantification of lactoyl-CoA (lactyl-CoA) by liquid chromatography mass spectrometry in mammalian cells and tissues." (2020). Department of Pathology, Anatomy, and Cell Biology Faculty Papers. Paper 307.
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