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The bacterial homologues of the signal recognition particle (SRP) and its receptor, the Ffh*4.5S RNA ribonucleoprotein complex and the FtsY protein, respectively, form a unique complex in which both Ffh and FtsY act as GTPase activating proteins for one another, resulting in the mutual stimulation of GTP hydrolysis by both proteins. Previous work showed(More)
The "GTPase switch" paradigm, in which a GTPase switches between an active, GTP-bound state and an inactive, GDP-bound state through the recruitment of nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs) or GTPase activating proteins (GAPs), has been used to interpret the regulatory mechanism of many GTPases. A notable exception to this paradigm is provided by two GTPases(More)
The pathway by which ubiquitin chains are generated on substrate through a cascade of enzymes consisting of an E1, E2 and E3 remains unclear. Multiple distinct models involving chain assembly on E2 or substrate have been proposed. However, the speed and complexity of the reaction have precluded direct experimental tests to distinguish between potential(More)
Divalent metal ions play a crucial role in catalysis by many RNA and protein enzymes that carry out phosphoryl transfer reactions, and defining their interactions with substrates is critical for understanding the mechanism of biological phosphoryl transfer. Although a vast amount of structural work has identified metal ions bound at the active site of many(More)
Proper protein localization is essential for all cells. However, the precise mechanism by which high fidelity is achieved is not well understood for any protein-targeting pathway. To address this fundamental question, we investigated the signal recognition particle (SRP) pathway in Escherichia coli, which delivers proteins to the bacterial inner membrane(More)
Two GTPases in the signal recognition particle (SRP) and its receptor (SR) control the delivery of newly synthesized proteins to the endoplasmic reticulum or plasma membrane. During the protein targeting reaction, the 4.5S SRP RNA accelerates the association between the two GTPases by 400-fold. Using fluorescence resonance energy transfer, we demonstrate(More)
The signal recognition particle (SRP) and SRP receptor comprise the major cellular machinery that mediates the cotranslational targeting of proteins to cellular membranes. It remains unclear how the delivery of cargos to the target membrane is spatially coordinated. We show here that phospholipid binding drives important conformational rearrangements that(More)
During cotranslational protein targeting, two guanosine triphosphatase (GTPase) in the signal recognition particle (SRP) and its receptor (SR) form a unique complex in which hydrolyses of both guanosine triphosphates (GTP) are activated in a shared active site. It was thought that GTP hydrolysis drives the recycling of SRP and SR, but is not crucial for(More)
Efficient and accurate protein localization is essential to cells and requires protein-targeting machineries to both effectively capture the cargo in the cytosol and productively unload the cargo at the membrane. To understand how these challenges are met, we followed the interaction of translating ribosomes during their targeting by the signal recognition(More)
Signal sequences target proteins for secretion from cells or for integration into cell membranes. As nascent proteins emerge from the ribosome, signal sequences are recognized by the signal recognition particle (SRP), which subsequently associates with its receptor (SR). In this complex, the SRP and SR stimulate each other's GTPase activity, and GTP(More)