Constitutive activation mechanism of a class C GPCR.
Shin J., Park J., Jeong J., Lam JH., Qiu X., Wu D., Kim K., Lee J-Y., Robinson CV., Hyun J., Katritch V., Kim KP., Cho Y.
Class C G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are activated through binding of agonists to the large extracellular domain (ECD) followed by rearrangement of the transmembrane domains (TMDs). GPR156, a class C orphan GPCR, is unique because it lacks an ECD and exhibits constitutive activity. Impaired GPR156-Gi signaling contributes to loss of hearing. Here we present the cryo-electron microscopy structures of human GPR156 in the Go-free and Go-coupled states. We found that an endogenous phospholipid molecule is located within each TMD of the GPR156 dimer. Asymmetric binding of Gα to the phospholipid-bound GPR156 dimer restructures the first and second intracellular loops and the carboxy-terminal part of the elongated transmembrane 7 (TM7) without altering dimer conformation. Our findings reveal that GPR156 is a transducer for phospholipid signaling. Constant binding of abundant phospholipid molecules and the G-protein-induced reshaping of the cytoplasmic face provide a basis for the constitutive activation of GPR156.