5 years ago

Metamorphic Proteins: Emergence of Dual Protein Folds from One Primary Sequence

Metamorphic Proteins: Emergence of Dual Protein Folds from One Primary Sequence
Radhakrishnan Mahalakshmi, Muralikrishna Lella
Every amino acid exhibits a different propensity for distinct structural conformations. Hence, decoding how the primary amino acid sequence undergoes the transition to a defined secondary structure and its final three-dimensional fold is presently considered predictable with reasonable certainty. However, protein sequences that defy the first principles of secondary structure prediction (they attain two different folds) have recently been discovered. Such proteins, aptly named metamorphic proteins, decrease the conformational constraint by increasing flexibility in the secondary structure and thereby result in efficient functionality. In this review, we discuss the major factors driving the conformational switch related both to protein sequence and to structure using illustrative examples. We discuss the concept of an evolutionary transition in sequence and structure, the functional impact of the tertiary fold, and the pressure of intrinsic and external factors that give rise to metamorphic proteins. We mainly focus on the major components of protein architecture, namely, the α-helix and β-sheet segments, which are involved in conformational switching within the same or highly similar sequences. These chameleonic sequences are widespread in both cytosolic and membrane proteins, and these folds are equally important for protein structure and function. We discuss the implications of metamorphic proteins and chameleonic peptide sequences in de novo peptide design.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.biochem.7b00375

DOI: 10.1021/acs.biochem.7b00375

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