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Stagno J.R.,Macromolecular Crystallography Laboratory | Altieri A.S.,Structural Biophysics Laboratory | Altieri A.S.,University of Maryland College Park | Bubunenko M.,Gene Regulation and Chromosome Biology Laboratory | And 6 more authors.
Nucleic Acids Research | Year: 2011

Processive transcription antitermination requires the assembly of the complete antitermination complex, which is initiated by the formation of the ternary NusB-NusE-BoxA RNA complex. We have elucidated the crystal structure of this complex, demonstrating that the BoxA RNA is composed of 8nt that are recognized by the NusB-NusE heterodimer. Functional biologic and biophysical data support the structural observations and establish the relative significance of key protein-protein and protein-RNA interactions. Further crystallographic investigation of a NusB-NusE-dsRNA complex reveals a heretofore unobserved dsRNA binding site contiguous with the BoxA binding site. We propose that the observed dsRNA represents BoxB RNA, as both single-stranded BoxA and double-stranded BoxB components are present in the classical lambda antitermination site. Combining these data with known interactions amongst antitermination factors suggests a specific model for the assembly of the complete antitermination complex. © 2011 The Author(s).

Sezgin E.,Laboratory of Genomic Diversity | Jabs D.A.,Johns Hopkins University | Jabs D.A.,Mount Sinai School of Medicine | Hendrickson S.L.,Laboratory of Genomic Diversity | And 6 more authors.
Journal of Infectious Diseases | Year: 2010

Background. Cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis is a common opportunistic infection among patients with AIDS and still causes visual morbidity despite the wide spread usage of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). The ubiquitous CMV pathogen contains a human interleukin-10 (IL-10) homolog in its genome and utilizes it to evade host immune reactions through an IL-10 receptor mediated immune-suppression pathway. Methods. Effects of IL-10R1, IL-10 and previously described AIDS restriction gene variants are investigated on the development of CMV retinitis in the Longitudinal Study of the Ocular Complications of AIDS (LSOCA) cohort (n = 1284). Results. In European Americans (n = 750), a haplotype carrying an amino acid changing variation in the cytoplasmic domain (S420L) of IL-10R1 can be protective (OR, 0.14; 95% CI, 0.02-0.94; P = .04) against, whereas another haplotype carrying an amino acid changing variation in the extracellular domain (I224V) of IL-10R1 can be more susceptible (OR, 6.21; 95% CI, 1.22- 31.54; P = .03) to CMV retinitis. In African Americans (n = 534), potential effects of IL-10 variants are observed. Conclusion. Host genetics may have a role in the occurrence of CMV retinitis in patients infected with HIV. © 2010 by the Infectious Diseases Society of America.

Bryksa B.C.,University of Guelph | Bhaumik P.,Macromolecular Crystallography Laboratory | Magracheva E.,SAIC | De Moura D.C.,University of Guelph | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Biological Chemistry | Year: 2011

Many plant aspartic proteases contain an additional sequence of ∼100 amino acids termed the plant-specific insert, which is involved in host defense and vacuolar targeting. Similar to all saposin-like proteins, the plant-specific insert functions via protein-membrane interactions; however, the structural basis for such interactions has not been studied, and the nature of plant-specific insert-mediated membrane disruption has not been characterized. In the present study, the crystal structure of the saposin-like domain of potato aspartic protease was resolved at a resolution of 1.9 Å, revealing an open V-shaped configuration similar to the open structure of human saposin C. Notably, vesicle disruption activity followed Michaelis-Menten-like kinetics, a finding not previously reported for saposin-like proteins including plant-specific inserts. Circular dichroism data suggested that secondary structure was pH-dependent in a fashion similar to influenza A he magglutinin fusion peptide. Membrane effects characterized by atomic force microscopy and light scattering indicated bilayer solubilization as well as fusogenic activity. Taken together, the present study is the first report to elucidate the membrane interaction mechanism of plant saposin-like domains whereby pH-dependent membrane interactions resulted in bilayer fusogenic activity that probably arose from a viral type pH-dependent helix-kink-helix motif at the plant-specific insert N terminus.

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