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Protein Expr Purif. 2006 May;47(1):273-80. Epub 2005 Nov 4.

Purification and biochemical characterization of a monomeric form of papaya mosaic potexvirus coat protein.

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  • 1Centre de Recherche sur la fonction, la structure et l'ingénierie des protéines CREPSIP, Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Laval University, Pavillon C-E Marchand, Que., PQ, Canada G1K 7P4.


Papaya mosaic virus (PapMV) is a flexuous rod shape virus made of 1400 subunits that assemble around a plus sense genomic RNA. The structure determination of PapMV and of flexuous viruses in general is a major challenge for both NMR and X-ray crystallography. In this report, we present the characterization of a truncated version of the PapMV coat protein (CP) that is suitable for NMR study. The deletion of the N-terminal 26 amino acids of the PapMV CP (CP27-215) generates a monomer that can be expressed to high level and easily purified for production of an adequate NMR sample. The RNA gel shift assay showed that CP27-215 lost its ability to bind RNA in vitro, suggesting that the multimerization of the subunit is important for this function. The fusion of a 6x His tag at the C-terminus improved the solubility of the monomer and allowed its concentration to 0.2 mM. The CD spectra of the truncated and the wild-type proteins were similar, suggesting that both proteins are well ordered and have a similar secondary structure. CP27-215 was 15N labeled for NMR studies and a 2D 1H-15N-HSQC spectrum confirmed the presence of a well-ordered structure and the monomeric form of the protein. These results show that CP27-215 is amenable to a complete and exhaustive NMR study that should lead to the first three-dimensional structure determination of a flexuous rod shape virus.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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