2,817 research outputs found

    A putative ATPase mediates RNA transcription and capping in a dsRNA virus.

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    mRNA transcription in dsRNA viruses is a highly regulated process but the mechanism of this regulation is not known. Here, by nucleoside triphosphatase (NTPase) assay and comparisons of six high-resolution (2.9-3.1 Å) cryo-electron microscopy structures of cytoplasmic polyhedrosis virus with bound ligands, we show that the large sub-domain of the guanylyltransferase (GTase) domain of the turret protein (TP) also has an ATP-binding site and is likely an ATPase. S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM) acts as a signal and binds the methylase-2 domain of TP to induce conformational change of the viral capsid, which in turn activates the putative ATPase. ATP binding/hydrolysis leads to an enlarged capsid for efficient mRNA synthesis, an open GTase domain for His217-mediated guanylyl transfer, and an open methylase-1 domain for SAM binding and methyl transfer. Taken together, our data support a role of the putative ATPase in mediating the activation of mRNA transcription and capping within the confines of the virus

    Tubulin cofactors and Arl2 are cage-like chaperones that regulate the soluble αβ-tubulin pool for microtubule dynamics.

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    Microtubule dynamics and polarity stem from the polymerization of αβ-tubulin heterodimers. Five conserved tubulin cofactors/chaperones and the Arl2 GTPase regulate α- and β-tubulin assembly into heterodimers and maintain the soluble tubulin pool in the cytoplasm, but their physical mechanisms are unknown. Here, we reconstitute a core tubulin chaperone consisting of tubulin cofactors TBCD, TBCE, and Arl2, and reveal a cage-like structure for regulating αβ-tubulin. Biochemical assays and electron microscopy structures of multiple intermediates show the sequential binding of αβ-tubulin dimer followed by tubulin cofactor TBCC onto this chaperone, forming a ternary complex in which Arl2 GTP hydrolysis is activated to alter αβ-tubulin conformation. A GTP-state locked Arl2 mutant inhibits ternary complex dissociation in vitro and causes severe defects in microtubule dynamics in vivo. Our studies suggest a revised paradigm for tubulin cofactors and Arl2 functions as a catalytic chaperone that regulates soluble αβ-tubulin assembly and maintenance to support microtubule dynamics

    Inhibition by small-molecule ligands of formation of amyloid fibrils of an immunoglobulin light chain variable domain.

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    Overproduction of immunoglobulin light chains leads to systemic amyloidosis, a lethal disease characterized by the formation of amyloid fibrils in patients' tissues. Excess light chains are in equilibrium between dimers and less stable monomers which can undergo irreversible aggregation to the amyloid state. The dimers therefore must disassociate into monomers prior to forming amyloid fibrils. Here we identify ligands that inhibit amyloid formation by stabilizing the Mcg light chain variable domain dimer and shifting the equilibrium away from the amyloid-prone monomer

    TRIP13 is a protein-remodeling AAA+ ATPase that catalyzes MAD2 conformation switching.

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    The AAA+ family ATPase TRIP13 is a key regulator of meiotic recombination and the spindle assembly checkpoint, acting on signaling proteins of the conserved HORMA domain family. Here we present the structure of the Caenorhabditis elegans TRIP13 ortholog PCH-2, revealing a new family of AAA+ ATPase protein remodelers. PCH-2 possesses a substrate-recognition domain related to those of the protein remodelers NSF and p97, while its overall hexameric architecture and likely structural mechanism bear close similarities to the bacterial protein unfoldase ClpX. We find that TRIP13, aided by the adapter protein p31(comet), converts the HORMA-family spindle checkpoint protein MAD2 from a signaling-active 'closed' conformer to an inactive 'open' conformer. We propose that TRIP13 and p31(comet) collaborate to inactivate the spindle assembly checkpoint through MAD2 conformational conversion and disassembly of mitotic checkpoint complexes. A parallel HORMA protein disassembly activity likely underlies TRIP13's critical regulatory functions in meiotic chromosome structure and recombination

    A novel N-terminal extension in mitochondrial TRAP1 serves as a thermal regulator of chaperone activity.

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    Hsp90 is a conserved chaperone that facilitates protein homeostasis. Our crystal structure of the mitochondrial Hsp90, TRAP1, revealed an extension of the N-terminal β-strand previously shown to cross between protomers in the closed state. In this study, we address the regulatory function of this extension or 'strap' and demonstrate its responsibility for an unusual temperature dependence in ATPase rates. This dependence is a consequence of a thermally sensitive kinetic barrier between the apo 'open' and ATP-bound 'closed' conformations. The strap stabilizes the closed state through trans-protomer interactions. Displacement of cis-protomer contacts from the apo state is rate-limiting for closure and ATP hydrolysis. Strap release is coupled to rotation of the N-terminal domain and dynamics of the nucleotide binding pocket lid. The strap is conserved in higher eukaryotes but absent from yeast and prokaryotes suggesting its role as a thermal and kinetic regulator, adapting Hsp90s to the demands of unique cellular and organismal environments

    Structure of catalase determined by MicroED.

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    MicroED is a recently developed method that uses electron diffraction for structure determination from very small three-dimensional crystals of biological material. Previously we used a series of still diffraction patterns to determine the structure of lysozyme at 2.9 Å resolution with MicroED (Shi et al., 2013). Here we present the structure of bovine liver catalase determined from a single crystal at 3.2 Å resolution by MicroED. The data were collected by continuous rotation of the sample under constant exposure and were processed and refined using standard programs for X-ray crystallography. The ability of MicroED to determine the structure of bovine liver catalase, a protein that has long resisted atomic analysis by traditional electron crystallography, demonstrates the potential of this method for structure determination

    Imaging and energetics of single SSB-ssDNA molecules reveal intramolecular condensation and insight into RecOR function.

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    Escherichia coli single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) binding protein (SSB) is the defining bacterial member of ssDNA binding proteins essential for DNA maintenance. SSB binds ssDNA with a variable footprint of ∼30-70 nucleotides, reflecting partial or full wrapping of ssDNA around a tetramer of SSB. We directly imaged single molecules of SSB-coated ssDNA using total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy and observed intramolecular condensation of nucleoprotein complexes exceeding expectations based on simple wrapping transitions. We further examined this unexpected property by single-molecule force spectroscopy using magnetic tweezers. In conditions favoring complete wrapping, SSB engages in long-range reversible intramolecular interactions resulting in condensation of the SSB-ssDNA complex. RecO and RecOR, which interact with SSB, further condensed the complex. Our data support the idea that RecOR--and possibly other SSB-interacting proteins-function(s) in part to alter long-range, macroscopic interactions between or throughout nucleoprotein complexes by microscopically altering wrapping and bridging distant sites

    Direct measurement of the mechanical work during translocation by the ribosome.

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    A detailed understanding of tRNA/mRNA translocation requires measurement of the forces generated by the ribosome during this movement. Such measurements have so far remained elusive and, thus, little is known about the relation between force and translocation and how this reflects on its mechanism and regulation. Here, we address these questions using optical tweezers to follow translation by individual ribosomes along single mRNA molecules, against an applied force. We find that translocation rates depend exponentially on the force, with a characteristic distance close to the one-codon step, ruling out the existence of sub-steps and showing that the ribosome likely functions as a Brownian ratchet. We show that the ribosome generates ∼13 pN of force, barely sufficient to unwind the most stable structures in mRNAs, thus providing a basis for their regulatory role. Our assay opens the way to characterizing the ribosomes full mechano-chemical cycle
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