5 years ago

Protein Assembly and Building Blocks: Beyond the Limits of the LEGO Brick Metaphor

Protein Assembly and Building Blocks: Beyond the Limits of the LEGO Brick Metaphor
Yaakov Levy
Proteins, like other biomolecules, have a modular and hierarchical structure. Various building blocks are used to construct proteins of high structural complexity and diverse functionality. In multidomain proteins, for example, domains are fused to each other in different combinations to achieve different functions. Although the LEGO brick metaphor is justified as a means of simplifying the complexity of three-dimensional protein structures, several fundamental properties (such as allostery or the induced-fit mechanism) make deviation from it necessary to respect the plasticity, softness, and cross-talk that are essential to protein function. In this work, we illustrate recently reported protein behavior in multidomain proteins that deviates from the LEGO brick analogy. While earlier studies showed that a protein domain is often unaffected by being fused to another domain or becomes more stable following the formation of a new interface between the tethered domains, destabilization due to tethering has been reported for several systems. We illustrate that tethering may sometimes result in a multidomain protein behaving as “less than the sum of its parts”. We survey these cases for which structure additivity does not guarantee thermodynamic additivity. Protein destabilization due to fusion to other domains may be linked in some cases to biological function and should be taken into account when designing large assemblies.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.biochem.7b00666

DOI: 10.1021/acs.biochem.7b00666

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.