Symmetry and structure in the POT family of proton coupled peptide transporters
© 2017 by the authors. The POT family of proton coupled oligopeptide transporters belong to the Major Facilitator Superfamily of secondary active transporters and are found widely distributed in bacterial, plant, fungal and animal genomes. POT transporters use the inwardly directed proton electrochemical gradient to drive the concentrative uptake of di- and tri-peptides across the cell membrane for metabolic assimilation. Mammalian members of the family, PepT1 and PepT2, are responsible for the uptake and retention of dietary protein in the human body, and due to their promiscuity in ligand recognition, play important roles in the pharmacokinetics of drug transport. Recent crystal structures of bacterial and plant members have revealed the overall architecture for this protein family and provided a framework for understanding proton coupled transport within the POT family. An interesting outcome from these studies has been the discovery of symmetrically equivalent structural and functional sites. This review will highlight both the symmetry and asymmetry in structure and function within the POT family and discuss the implications of these considerations in understanding transport and regulation.