Francesca Zito

Francesca Zito
French National Centre for Scientific Research | CNRS · Sciences de la Vie

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36
Publications
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1,604
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Publications

Publications (36)
Article
Full-text available
Site-directed mutagenesis of chloroplast genes was developed three decades ago and has greatly advanced the field of photosynthesis research. Here, we describe a new approach for generating random chloroplast gene mutants that combines error-prone PCR of a gene of interest with chloroplast complementation of the knock-out Chlamydomonas reinhardtii...
Article
Full-text available
The cytochrome (cyt) b6f complex and Stt7 kinase regulate the antenna sizes of photosystems I and II through state transitions, which are mediated by a reversible phosphorylation of light har- vesting complexes II, depending on the redox state of the plasto- quinone pool. When the pool is reduced, the cyt b6f activates the Stt7 kinase through a mec...
Chapter
The unexpected existence of heme c i (or c n) of cytochrome b 6f complex was revealed to the scientific community in Spring 2003 at the Gordon Bioenergetics conference, taking place at Kimball Union Academy, NH, USA. The three-dimensional structures of the complex were published back-to-back by two independent groups in Fall 2003 (Kurisu et al. Sci...
Chapter
Membrane proteins (MPs) exhibit a broad range of activities, which are crucial for cell survival. They can be pumps, channels, enzymes, scaffolds, signal transmitters, or a combination of these functions. Understanding their molecular mechanisms generally requires their extraction out of membranes and their purification. Solubilization and isolatio...
Article
Amphipols (APols) are amphipathic polymers with the ability to substitute detergents to keep membrane proteins (MPs) soluble and functional in aqueous solutions. APols also protect MPs against denaturation. Here, we have examined the ability of APol-trapped MPs to be analyzed by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectr...
Article
Nonionic amphipols (NAPols) synthesized by homotelomerization of an amphiphatic monomer are able to keep membrane proteins (MPs) stable and functional in the absence of detergent. Some of their biochemical and biophysical properties and applications have been examined, with particular attention being paid to their complementarity with the classical...
Article
Full-text available
Amphipols (APols) are short amphipathic polymers that can substitute for detergents to keep integral membrane proteins (MPs) water soluble. In this review, we discuss their structure and solution behavior; the way they associate with MPs; and the structure, dynamics, and solution properties of the resulting complexes. All MPs tested to date form wa...
Article
Full-text available
Cell-free protein synthesis is a well-known technique for the roles it has played in deciphering the genetic code and in the beginnings of signal sequence studies. Since then, many efforts have been made to optimise this technique and, recently, to adapt it to membrane protein production with yields compatible with structural investigations. The ve...
Article
Full-text available
Oxidoreductases of the cytochrome bc1/b6f family transfer electrons from a liposoluble quinol to a soluble acceptor protein and contribute to the formation of a transmembrane electrochemical potential. The crystal structure of cyt b6f has revealed the presence in the Qi site of an atypical c-type heme, heme ci. Surprisingly, the protein does not pr...
Article
The cytochrome b(6)f complex catalyses electron transfer from plastoquinol to a hydrosoluble acceptor (plastocyanin), while building up an electrochemical proton gradient. Oxidation and reduction of plastoquinol occur respectively at the Q(o) site (exposed on the luminal side of the thylakoid membrane) and at the Q(i) site (facing the stroma). The...
Article
Amphipols (APols) are short amphipathic polymers that can substitute for detergents to keep membrane proteins (MPs) water-soluble while stabilizing them biochemically. We have examined the factors that determine the size and dispersity of MP/APol complexes and studied the dynamics of the association, taking as a model system the transmembrane domai...
Article
The possibility of organizing detergent-solubilized membrane proteins in a plane within the core of Newton black films (NBFs) formed from fluorinated surfactants has been investigated. Fluorinated surfactants have the interesting characteristics of being poorly miscible with detergents and highly surface-active. As a result, when a membrane protein...
Article
Full-text available
Hemifluorinated and fluorinated surfactants are lipophobic and, as such, non-detergent. Although they do not solubilize biological membranes, they can, after conventional solubilization, substitute for detergents to keep membrane proteins soluble, which generally improves their stability [Breyton, Chabaud, Chaudier, Pucci and Popot (2004) FEBS Lett...
Article
Unlike plants, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii shows a restricted ability to develop nonphotochemical quenching upon illumination. Most of this limited quenching is due to state transitions instead of DeltapH-driven high-energy state quenching, qE. The latter could only be observed when the ability of the cells to perform photosynthesis was impaired, eit...
Article
The three-dimensional structure of the cytochrome b(6)f complex disclosed the unexpected presence of a new heme c(i) [Stroebel, D., Choquet, Y., Popot, J.-L., and Picot, D. (2003) Nature 426, 413-418; Kurisu, G., Zhang, H., Smith, J. L., and Cramer, W. A. (2003) Science 302, 1009-1014]. Here we present a biochemical, spectroscopic, and mutagenesis...
Article
Full-text available
Membrane proteins classically are handled in aqueous solutions as complexes with detergents. The dissociating character of detergents, combined with the need to maintain an excess of them, frequently results in more or less rapid inactivation of the protein under study. Over the past few years, we have endeavored to develop a novel family of surfac...
Article
Full-text available
The rate of synthesis of cytochrome f is decreased approximately 10-fold when it does not assemble with the other subunits of the cytochrome b(6)f complex in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii chloroplasts. This assembly-mediated regulation of cytochrome f synthesis corresponds to a regulation of petA mRNA initiation of translation. Here, we demonstrate tha...
Article
Cytochrome b(6)f complexes contain a molecule of chlorophyll a (Chla), which, in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, can be exchanged for extraneous chlorophyll during protracted incubation of the purified complex in detergent solution. The specificity of the site and its location in the complex have been studied by photochemical coupling and circular dichr...
Article
The synthesis and usefulness in membrane biochemistry of a new class of surfactants have been investigated. 1-Ethyl-2-dimethylamine oxide polar heads were grafted onto a hydrocarbon, a fluorocarbon or an ethyl-capped fluorocarbon hydrophobic tail. The ability of the resulting surfactants to extract and/or to stabilize in aqueous solution a test mem...
Article
Full-text available
The cytochrome b(6)f complex of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii contains four large subunits and at least three small ones, PetG, PetL, and PetM, whose role and location are unknown. Chimeric proteins have been constructed, in which the C terminus of subunit IV is fused to either one or the other of the two putative N termini of PetL. Biochemical and fun...
Article
The cytochromeb 6 f complex of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii contains four large subunits and at least three small ones, PetG, PetL, and PetM, whose role and location are unknown. Chimeric proteins have been constructed, in which the C terminus of subunit IV is fused to either one or the other of the two putative N termini of PetL. Biochemical and func...
Article
Full-text available
The energetic metabolism of photosynthetic organisms is profoundly influenced by state transitions and cyclic electron flow around photosystem I. The former involve a reversible redistribution of the light-harvesting antenna between photosystem I and photosystem II and optimize light energy utilization in photosynthesis whereas the latter process m...
Article
We have investigated the relationship between the occupancy of the Qo site in the cytochromeb 6 f complex and the activation of the LHCII protein kinase that controls state transitions. To this aim, fluorescence emission and LHCII phosphorylation patterns were studied in whole cells of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii treated with different plastoquinone...
Article
In photosynthetic cells of higher plants and algae, the distribution of light energy between photosystem I and photosystem II is controlled by light quality through a process called state transition. It involves a reorganization of the light-harvesting complex of photosystem II (LHCII) within the thylakoid membrane whereby light energy captured pre...
Chapter
Cytochrome f is a chloroplast-encoded protein whose production requires a multi-step maturation process: the petA gene product is converted from a precursor apo-form to a mature holo-form. We used Chlamydomonas reinhardtii whose chloroplast genome can be easily transformed, to produce two site-directed cytochrome f mutants that were expected to be...
Article
Full-text available
We have introduced a proline codon in place of a leucine codon at position 204 of the petB gene of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. This gene modification mimics the presence of proline codons at the same position in the petB genes of maize and tobacco, which are subsequently edited to leucine codons at the RNA level. Following transformation, we observe...

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