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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

BiP acts as a molecular ratchet during posttranslational transport of prepro-alpha factor across the ER membrane.

We have addressed the mechanism by which proteins are posttranslationally transported across the membrane of the yeast endoplasmic reticulum (ER). We demonstrate that BiP (Kar2p), a member of the Hsp70 family resident in the ER lumen, acts as a molecular ratchet during translocation of the secretory protein prepro-alpha factor through the channel formed by the Sec complex. Multiple BiP molecules associate with each translocation substrate following interaction with the J domain of the Sec63p component of the Sec complex. Bound BiP minimizes passive backward movements of the substrate through the channel, and BiP's subsequent dissociation results in a free polypeptide in the ER lumen. Antibodies against the substrate can replace BiP, indicating that a Brownian ratchet is sufficient to achieve translocation.[1]


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