[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Translation termination in eukaryotes is governed by the interaction of two, class 1 and class 2, polypeptide chain release factors with the ribosome. The middle (M) domain of the class 1 factor eRF1 contains the strictly conserved GGQ motif and is involved in hydrolysis of the peptidyl-tRNA ester bond in the peptidyl transferase center of the large ribosome subunit. Heteronuclear NMR spectroscopy was used to map the interaction interface of the M domain of human eRF1 with eukaryotic ribosomes. The protein was found to specifically interact with the 60S subunit, since no interaction was detected with the 40S subunit. The amino acid residues forming the interface mostly belong to long helix alpha1 of the M domain. Some residues adjacent to alpha1 and belonging to strand beta5 and short helices alpha2 and alpha3 are also involved in the protein–ribosome contact. The functionally inactive G183A mutant interacted with the ribosome far more weakly as compared with the wild-type eRF1. The interaction interfaces of the two proteins were nonidentical. It was concluded that long helix alpha1 is functionally important and that the conformational flexibility of the GGQ loop is essential for the tight protein–ribosome contact.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Homing endonucleases initiate nonreciprocal transfer of DNA segments containing their own genes and the flanking sequences by cleaving the recipient DNA. Bacteriophage T4 segB gene, which is located in a cluster of tRNA genes, encodes a protein of unknown function, homologous to homing endonucleases of the GIY-YIG family. We demonstrate that SegB protein is a site-specific endonuclease, which produces mostly 3' 2-nt protruding ends at its DNA cleavage site. Analysis of SegB cleavage sites suggests that SegB recognizes a 27-bp sequence. It contains 11-bp conserved sequence, which corresponds to a conserved motif of tRNA TpsiC stem-loop, whereas the remainder of the recognition site is rather degenerate. T4-related phages T2L, RB1 and RB3 contain tRNA gene regions that are homologous to that of phage T4 but lack segB gene and several tRNA genes. In co-infections of phages T4 and T2L, segB gene is inherited with nearly 100% of efficiency. The preferred inheritance depends absolutely on the segB gene integrity and is accompanied by the loss of the T2L tRNA gene region markers. We suggest that SegB is a homing endonuclease that functions to ensure spreading of its own gene and the surrounding tRNA genes among T4-related phages.
Nucleic Acids Research 05/2008; 36(6):2094-105. DOI:10.1093/nar/gkn053 · 9.11 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Class 1 eukaryotic release factor 1 (eRF1) recognizes all three stop codons (UAA, UAG, and UGA) in standard-code organisms.
In some ciliates with variant genetic codes, one or two stop codons are used to encode amino acids and are not recognized
by eRF1; e.g., UAA and UAG are reassigned to Gln in Stylonychia and UGA is reassigned to Cys in Euplotes. Stop codon recognition is due to the N-terminal domain of eRF1 in standard-code organisms. Since variant-code ciliates most
likely originate from universal-code ancestors, the N-domain sequence of their eRF1 was assumed to harbor the residues that
are responsible for the changes in stop codon recognition specificity. To identify the N-domain regions determining the UGA-only
specificity of Euplotes aediculatus eRF1, chimeric proteins were constructed by swapping various N-domain fragments of the E. aediculatus for their human counterparts; the MC domain was from human eRF1. Functional analysis of the chimeric eRF1 in vivo revealed
two regions (residues 38–50 and 123–145) restricting the E. aediculatus eRF1 specificity to UAR. The change in stop codon recognition specificity of eRF1 was regarded as the first step in the origin
of the variant genetic code in ciliates.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The eukaryotic class 1 polypeptide chain release factor is a three-domain protein involved in the termination of translation, the final stage of polypeptide biosynthesis. In attempts to understand the roles of the middle domain of the eukaryotic class 1 polypeptide chain release factor in the transduction of the termination signal from the small to the large ribosomal subunit and in peptidyl-tRNA hydrolysis, its high-resolution NMR structure has been obtained. The overall fold and the structure of the beta-strand core of the protein in solution are similar to those found in the crystal. However, the orientation of the functionally critical GGQ loop and neighboring alpha-helices has genuine and noticeable differences in solution and in the crystal. Backbone amide protons of most of the residues in the GGQ loop undergo fast exchange with water. However, in the AGQ mutant, where functional activity is abolished, a significant reduction in the exchange rate of the amide protons has been observed without a noticeable change in the loop conformation, providing evidence for the GGQ loop interaction with water molecule(s) that may serve as a substrate for the hydrolytic cleavage of the peptidyl-tRNA in the ribosome. The protein backbone dynamics, studied using 15N relaxation experiments, showed that the GGQ loop is the most flexible part of the middle domain. The conformational flexibility of the GGQ and 215-223 loops, which are situated at opposite ends of the longest alpha-helix, could be a determinant of the functional activity of the eukaryotic class 1 polypeptide chain release factor, with that helix acting as the trigger to transmit the signals from one loop to the other.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Eukaryotic translational termination is triggered by polypeptide release factors eRF1, eRF3, and one of the three stop codons at the ribosomal A-site. Isothermal titration calorimetry shows that (i) the separated MC, M, and C domains of human eRF1 bind to eRF3; (ii) GTP binding to eRF3 requires complex formation with either the MC or M + C domains; (iii) the M domain interacts with the N and C domains; (iv) the MC domain and Mg2+ induce GTPase activity of eRF3 in the ribosome. We suggest that GDP binding site of eRF3 acquires an ability to bind gamma-phosphate of GTP if altered by cooperative action of the M and C domains of eRF1. Thus, the stop-codon decoding is associated with the N domain of eRF1 while the GTPase activity of eRF3 is controlled by the MC domain of eRF1 demonstrating a substantial structural uncoupling of these two activities though functionally they are interrelated.
Proteins Structure Function and Bioinformatics 02/2007; 70(2):388-93. DOI:10.1002/prot.21544 · 2.63 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In universal-code eukaryotes, a single class-1 translation termination factor eRF1 decodes all three stop codons, UAA, UAG, and UGA. In some ciliates with variant genetic codes one or two stop codons are used to encode amino acid(s) and are not recognized by eRF1. In Stylonychia, UAG and UAA codons are reassigned as glutamine codons, and in Euplotes, UGA is reassigned as cysteine codon. In omnipotent eRF1s, stop codon recognition is associated with the N-terminal domain of eRF1. Because variant-code ciliates most likely evolved from universal code ancestor(s), structural features should exist in ciliate eRF1s that restrict their stop codon recognition. To find out amino acid residues which confer UAR-only specificity to Euplotes aediculatus eRF1, eRFI chimeras were constructed by swapping eRF1 E. aediculatus N-terminal domain sequences with the matching ones from the human protein. In these chimeras the MC-domain was from human eRF1. Functional analysis of these chimeric eRFI highlighted the crucial role of the two regions (positions 38-50 and 123-145) in the N-terminal domain of E. aediculatus eRF1 that restrict E. aediculatus eRF1 specificity toward UAR codons. Possibly, restriction of eRF1 specificity to UAR codons might have been an early event occurring in independent instances in ciliate evolutionary history, possibly facilitating the reassignment of UGA to sense codons.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Translation termination in eukaryotes is governed by two proteins, belonging to the class-1 (eRF1) and class-2 (eRF3) polypeptide release factors. eRF3 catalyzes hydrolysis of GTP to GDP and inorganic phosphate in the ribosome in the absence of mRNA, tRNA, aminoacyl-tRNA and peptidyl-tRNA but needs the presence of eRF1. It's known that eRF1 and eRF3 interact with each other in vitro and in vivo via their C-terminal regions. eRF1 consists of three domains - N, M, and C. In this study we examined the influence of individual domains of the human eRF1 on induction of the human eRF3 GTPase activity in the ribosome in vitro. It was shown that none of the N-, M-, C- and NM-domains induces eRF3 GTPase activity in presence of the ribosomes. MC-domain does induce GTPase activity of eRF3 but four times less efficient than full-length eRF1, therefore, MC-domain (and very likely M-domain) binds to the ribosome in the presence of eRF3. Based on these data and taking into account the data available in literature, a conclusion was drawn that the N domain of eRF1 is not essential for eRF1-dependent induction of the eRF3 GTPase activity. A working hypothesis is formulated, postulating that GTPase activity eRF3 during the translation termination is associated with the intermolecular interactions of GTP/GDP, GTPase center of the large ribosomal subunit (60S), MC-domain of eRF1, C-terminal region and GTP-binding domains of eRF3, but without participation of the N-terminal region of eRF3.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) was used to study thermal denaturation of the human class 1 translation termination
factor eRF1 and its mutants. Free energy changes caused by amino acid substitutions in the N domain were computed for eRF1.
The melting of eRF1, consisting of three domains, proved to be cooperative. The thermostability of eRF1 was not affected by
certain substitutions and was slightly increased by certain others. The corresponding residues were assumed to play no role
in maintaining the eRF1 structure, which agreed with the published X-ray data. In these mutants (E55D, Y125F, N61S, E55R,
E55A, N61S + S64D, C127A, and S64D), a selective loss of the capability to induce hydrolysis of peptidyl-tRNA in the ribosomal
P site in the presence of a stop codon was not associated with destabilization of their spatial structure. Rather, the loss
was due to local changes in the stereochemistry of the side groups of the corresponding residues in functionally important
sites of the N domain. Two amino acid residues of the N domain, N129 and F131, proved to play an important role in the structural
stability of eRF1 and to affect the selective recognition of mRNA stop codons in the ribosome. The recognition of the UAG
and UAA stop codons in vitro was more tightly associated with the stability of the spatial structure of eRF1 as compared with that of the UGA stop codon.