Structural and functional analysis of two small leucine-rich repeat proteoglycans, fibromodulin and chondroadherin.

24 Jan 2018

The small leucine-rich proteoglycans (SLRPs) are important regulators of extracellular matrix assembly and cell signalling. We have determined crystal structures at ~2.2Å resolution of human fibromodulin and chondroadherin, two collagen-binding SLRPs. Their overall fold is similar to that of the prototypical SLRP, decorin, but unlike decorin neither fibromodulin nor chondroadherin forms a stable dimer. A previously identified binding site for integrin α2β1 maps to an α-helix in the C-terminal cap region of chondroadherin. Interrogation of the Collagen Toolkits revealed a unique binding site for chondroadherin in collagen II, and no binding to collagen III. A triple-helical peptide containing the sequence GAOGPSGFQGLOGPOGPO (O is hydroxyproline) forms a stable complex with chondroadherin in solution. In fibrillar collagen I and II, this sequence is aligned with the collagen cross-linking site KGHR, suggesting a role for chondroadherin in cross-linking.