Multifunctionality and Intrinsic Disorder of Royal Jelly Proteome

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multifunctionality, Royal Jelly, proteome, protein structure, protein intrinsic disorder

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Royal Jelly (RJ) is a gelatinous white-yellowish fluid, possessing a sour taste and a slight phenolic smell that is secreted by the hypopharyngeal and mandibular salivary glands of the nurse honeybees, and is used in nutrition of larvae and adult queens. Similar to other substances associated with the activities of honeybees, RJ not only contains nutritive components, such as carbohydrates, proteins, peptides, lipids, vitamins, and mineral salts, but also represents a natural ingredient with cosmetic and health-promoting properties. RJ is characterized by remarkable multifunctionality, possessing numerous biological activities. Although this multifunctionality of RJ can be considered as a consequence of its complex nature, many proteins and peptides in RJ are polyfunctional entities themselves. In this article, we show that RJ proteins contain different levels of intrinsic disorder, have sites of post-translational modifications, can be found in multiple isoforms, and many of them possess disorder-based binding sites, suggesting that the conformational ensembles of the RJ proteins might undergo change as a result of their interaction with specific binding partners. All these observations suggest that the multifunctionality of proteins and peptides from RJ is determined by their structural heterogeneity and polymorphism, and serve as an illustration of the protein structure-function continuum concept.

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PROTEOMICS, v. 21, issue 6, art. 2000237