In this issue, Takahara and Maeda (2012) discover that together, Pbp1 and sequestration of the TORC1 complex in cytoplasmic mRNP stress granules provides a negative regulatory mechanism for TORC1 signaling during stress.
Apo-pseudoazurin is a single domain cupredoxin. We have engineered a mutant in which a unique tryptophan replaces the tyrosine residue found in the tyrosine comer of this Greek key protein, a region that has been proposed to have an important role in folding. Equilibrium denaturation of Y74W apo- pseudoazurin demonstrated multistate unfolding in urea (pH 7.0, 0.5 M Na2SO4 at 15 °C), in which one or more partially folded species are populated in 4.3 M urea. Using a variety of biophysical techniques, we show that these species, on average, have lost a substantial portion of the native secondary structure, lack fixed tertiary packing involving tryptophan and tyrosine residues, are less compact than the native state as determined by fluorescence lifetimes and time-resolved anisotropy, but retain significant residual structure involving the trytophan residue. Peptides ranging in length from 11 to 30 residues encompassing this region, however, did not contain detectable nonrandom structure, suggesting that long-range interactions are important for stabilizing the equilibrium partially unfolded species in the intact protein. On the basis of these results, we suggest that the equilibrium denaturation of Y74W apo-pseudoazurin generates one or more partially unfolded species that are globally collapsed and retain elements of the native structure involving the newly introduced tryptophan residue. We speculate on the role of such intermediates in the generation of the complex Greek key fold.
This chapter provides a guide to analyzing gene function using DNA microarrays. First, I discuss the design and interpretation of experiments where gene expression levels in mutant and wild-type strains are compared. I then provide a detailed description of the protocols for isolating mRNA from yeast cells, converting the RNA into dye-labeled cDNA, and hybridizing these samples to a microarray. Finally, I discuss methods for washing, scanning, and analyzing the arrays. Emphasis is placed on describing approaches and techniques that help to minimize the artifacts and noise that so often plague microarray data.
The bacterial immunity proteins Im7 and Im9 fold with mechanisms of different kinetic complexity. Whilst Im9 folds in a two-state transition at pH 7.0 and 10°C, Im7 populates an on-pathway intermediate under these conditions. In order to assess the role of sequence versus topology in the folding of these proteins, and to analyse the effect of populating an intermediate on the landscape for folding, we have determined the conformational properties of the rate-limiting transition state for Im9 folding/unfolding using ΦF-value analysis and have compared the results with similar data obtained previously for Im7. The data show that the rate-limiting transition states for Im9 and Im7 folding/unfolding are similar: both are compact (βT=0.94 and 0.89, respectively) and contain three of the four native helices docked around a specific hydrophobic core. Significant differences are observed, however, in the magnitude of the ΦF-values obtained for the two proteins. Of the 20 residues studied in both proteins, ten have ΦF-values in Im7 that exceed those in Im9 by more than 0.2, and of these five differ by more than 0.4. The data suggest that the population of an intermediate in Im7 results in folding via a transition state ensemble that is conformationally restricted relative to that of Im9. The data are consistent with the view that topology is an important determinant of folding. Importantly, however, they also demonstrate that while the folding transition state may be conserved in homologous proteins that fold with two and three-state kinetics, the population of an intermediate can have a significant effect on the breadth of the transition state ensemble. © 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.