Display Settings:


Send to:

Choose Destination
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 Dec 20;108(51):20357-61. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1113624108. Epub 2011 Dec 5.

Structural basis for Tetrahymena telomerase processivity factor Teb1 binding to single-stranded telomeric-repeat DNA.

Author information

  • 1Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Biological Chemistry, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA.


Telomerase copies its internal RNA template to synthesize telomeric DNA repeats. Unlike other polymerases, telomerase can retain its single-stranded product through multiple rounds of template dissociation and repositioning to accomplish repeat addition processivity (RAP). Tetrahymena telomerase holoenzyme RAP depends on a subunit, Teb1, with autonomous DNA-binding activity. Sequence homology and domain modeling suggest that Teb1 is a paralog of RPA70C, the largest subunit of the single-stranded DNA-binding factor replication protein (RPA), but unlike RPA, Teb1 binds DNA with high specificity for telomeric repeats. To understand the structural basis and significance of telomeric-repeat DNA recognition by Teb1, we solved crystal structures of three proposed Teb1 DNA-binding domains and defined amino acids of each domain that contribute to DNA interaction. Our studies indicate that two central Teb1 DNA-binding oligonucleotide/oligosaccharide-binding-fold domains, Teb1A and Teb1B, achieve high affinity and selectivity of telomeric-repeat recognition by principles similar to the telomere end-capping protein POT1 (protection of telomeres 1). An additional C-terminal Teb1 oligonucleotide/oligosaccharide-binding-fold domain, Teb1C, has features shared with the RPA70 C-terminal domain including a putative direct DNA-binding surface that is critical for high-RAP activity of reconstituted holoenzyme. The Teb1C zinc ribbon motif does not contribute to DNA binding but is nonetheless required for high-RAP activity, perhaps contributing to Teb1 physical association with the remainder of the holoenzyme. Our results suggest the biological model that high-affinity DNA binding by Teb1AB recruits holoenzyme to telomeres and subsequent Teb1C-DNA association traps product in a sliding-clamp-like manner that does not require high-affinity DNA binding for high stability of enzyme-product association.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (4)Free text

Fig. 1.
Fig. 2.
Fig. 3.
Fig. 4.
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk