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Plant Cell. 2000 Apr;12(4):493-506.

Structural requirements for ligand binding by a probable plant vacuolar sorting receptor.

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  • 1Institute of Biological Chemistry, Washington State University, Pullman, Washington 99164-6340, USA.


How sorting receptors recognize amino acid determinants on polypeptide ligands and respond to pH changes for ligand binding or release is unknown. The plant vacuolar sorting receptor BP-80 binds polypeptide ligands with a central Asn-Pro-Ile-Arg (NPIR) motif. tBP-80, a soluble form of the receptor lacking transmembrane and cytoplasmic sequences, binds the peptide SSSFADSNPIRPVTDRAASTYC as a monomer with a specificity indistinguishable from that of BP-80. tBP-80 contains an N-terminal region homologous to ReMembR-H2 (RMR) protein lumenal domains, a unique central region, and three C-terminal epidermal growth factor (EGF) repeats. By protease digestion of purified secreted tBP-80, and from ligand binding studies with a secreted protein lacking the EGF repeats, we defined three protease-resistant structural domains: an N-terminal/RMR homology domain connected to a central domain, which together determine the NPIR-specific ligand binding site, and a C-terminal EGF repeat domain that alters the conformation of the other two domains to enhance ligand binding. A fragment representing the central domain plus the C-terminal domain could bind ligand but was not specific for NPIR. These results indicate that two tBP-80 binding sites recognize two separate ligand determinants: a non-NPIR site defined by the central domain-EGF repeat domain structure and an NPIR-specific site contributed by the interaction of the N-terminal/RMR homology domain and the central domain.

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