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

Configuration of interdomain linkers in pyruvate dehydrogenase complex of Escherichia coli as determined by cryoelectron microscopy.

The dihydrolipoyl transacetylase (E2p) component of the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (PDC) of Escherichia coli is a multidomain polypeptide comprising a catalytic domain, a domain that binds dihydrolipoyl dehydrogenase (E3-binding domain), and three domains containing lipoic acid (lipoyl domains). In PDC 24 subunits of E2p associate by means of interactions involving the catalytic domains to form the structural core of PDC. From cryoelectron microscopy and computer image analysis of frozen-hydrated isolated E2p cores it appears that the lipoyl domains are located peripherally about the core complex and do not assume fixed positions. To further test this interpretation the visibility of the lipoyl domains in electron micrographs was enhanced by specifically biotinylating the lipoic acids and labeling them with streptavidin. In agreement with the studies of native, unlabeled E2p cores, cryoelectron microscopy of the streptavidin-labeled E2p cores showed that the lipoic acid moieties are capable of extending approximately 13 nm from the surface of the core. Localization of the E3-binding domains was accomplished by cryoelectron microscopy of E2p-E3 subcomplexes prepared by reconstitution in vitro. Frequently an apparent gap of several nanometers separated the bound E3 from the surface of the core. The third component of PDC, pyruvate dehydrogenase (E1p), appeared to bind to the E2p core in a manner similar to that observed for E3. These results support a structural model of the E2p core in which the catalytic, E3-binding, and three lipoyl domains are interconnected by linker sequences that assume extended and flexible conformations.[1]


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