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

Specific alterations of the EF-Tu polypeptide chain considered in the light of its three-dimensional structure.

Specific alterations of the elongation factor Tu (EF-Tu) polypeptide chain have been identified in a number of mutant species of this elongation factor. In two species, Ala-375, located on domain II, was found by amino acid analysis to be replaced by Thr and Val, respectively. These replacements substantially lower the affinity of EF-Tu.GDP for the antibiotic kirromycin. Since kirromycin can be cross-linked to Lys-357, also located on domain II but structurally very far from Ala-375, these data suggest that the replacements alter the relative position of domains I and II. The Ala-375 replacements also lower the dissociation rates of the binary complexes EF-Tu.GTP and the binding constants for EF-Tu.GTP and Phe-tRNA. It is conceivable that these effects are also mediated by movements of domains I and II relative to each other. Replacement of Gly-222 by Asp has been found in another mutant by DNA sequence analysis of the cloned tufB gene, coding for this mutant EF-Tu. Gly-222 is part of a structural domain, characteristic for a variety of nucleotide binding enzymes. Its replacement by Asp does not abolish the ability of EF-Tu to sustain protein synthesis. It increases the dissociation rate of EF-Tu.GTP by approximately 30%. In the presence of kirromycin this mutant species of EF-Tu.GDP does not bind to the ribosome, in contrast to its wild-type counterpart. A possible explanation is now open for experimental verification.[1]


  1. Specific alterations of the EF-Tu polypeptide chain considered in the light of its three-dimensional structure. Duisterwinkel, F.J., Kraal, B., De Graaf, J.M., Talens, A., Bosch, L., Swart, G.W., Parmeggiani, A., La Cour, T.F., Nyborg, J., Clark, B.F. EMBO J. (1984) [Pubmed]
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