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Annu Rev Biochem. 2005;74:247-81.

Structure, function, and formation of biological iron-sulfur clusters.

Author information

  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Blacksburg, Virginia 24061, USA. dejohns4@vt.edu

Abstract

Iron-sulfur [Fe-S] clusters are ubiquitous and evolutionary ancient prosthetic groups that are required to sustain fundamental life processes. Owing to their remarkable structural plasticity and versatile chemical/electronic features [Fe-S] clusters participate in electron transfer, substrate binding/activation, iron/sulfur storage, regulation of gene expression, and enzyme activity. Formation of intracellular [Fe-S] clusters does not occur spontaneously but requires a complex biosynthetic machinery. Three different types of [Fe-S] cluster biosynthetic systems have been discovered, and all of them are mechanistically unified by the requirement for a cysteine desulfurase and the participation of an [Fe-S] cluster scaffolding protein. Important mechanistic questions related to [Fe-S] cluster biosynthesis involve the molecular details of how [Fe-S] clusters are assembled on scaffold proteins, how [Fe-S] clusters are transferred from scaffolds to target proteins, how various accessory proteins participate in [Fe-S] protein maturation, and how the biosynthetic process is regulated.

PMID:
15952888
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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