Identification of transglutaminase 2 kinase substrates using a novel on-chip activity assay

Biosens Bioelectron. 2016 Aug 15;82:40-8. doi: 10.1016/j.bios.2016.03.064. Epub 2016 Mar 25.


Transglutaminase 2 (TG2) is an enzyme that plays a critical role in a wide variety of cellular processes through its multifunctional activities. TG2 kinase has emerged as an important regulator of apoptosis, as well as of chromatin structure and function. However, systematic investigation of TG2 kinase substrates is limited due to a lack of a suitable TG2 kinase activity assays. Thus, we developed a novel on-chip TG2 kinase activity assay for quantitative determination of TG2 kinase activity and for screening TG2 kinase substrate proteins in a high-throughput manner. Quantitative TG2 kinase activity was determined by selective detection of substrate protein phosphorylation on the surface of well-type amine arrays. The limit of detection (LOD) of this assay was 4.34μg/ml. We successfully applied this new activity assay to the kinetic analysis of 27 TG2-related proteins for TG2 kinase activity in a high-throughput manner and determined Michaelis-Menten constants (Km) of these proteins. We used the Km values and cellular locations of the TG2-related proteins to construct a substrate affinity map for TG2 kinase. Therefore, this on-chip TG2 kinase activity assay has a strong potential for the systematic investigation of substrate proteins and will be helpful for studying new physiological functions.

Keywords: Michaelis-Menten constants (K(m)); On-chip TG2 kinase activity assay; Substrate affinity map; Transglutaminase 2.

MeSH terms

  • Apoptosis
  • Biosensing Techniques / instrumentation*
  • Enzyme Assays / instrumentation
  • Equipment Design
  • GTP-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Kinetics
  • Phosphorylation
  • Protein Array Analysis / instrumentation*
  • Protein Kinases / metabolism*
  • Substrate Specificity
  • Transglutaminases / metabolism*


  • transglutaminase 2
  • Transglutaminases
  • Protein Kinases
  • GTP-Binding Proteins