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Protein Sci. 1995 Aug;4(8):1608-17.

Multidomain organization of eukaryotic guanine nucleotide exchange translation initiation factor eIF-2B subunits revealed by analysis of conserved sequence motifs.

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  • 1National Center for Biotechnology Information, National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20894, USA.


Computer-assisted analysis of amino acid sequences using methods for database screening with individual sequences and with multiple alignment blocks reveals a complex multidomain organization of yeast proteins GCD6 and GCD1, and mammalian homolog of GCD6-subunits of the eukaryotic translation initiation factor eIF-2B involved in GDP/GTP exchange on eIF-2. It is shown that these proteins contain a putative nucleotide-binding domain related to a variety of nucleotidyltransferases, most of which are involved in nucleoside diphosphate-sugar formation in bacteria. Three conserved motifs, one of which appears to be a variant of the phosphate-binding site (P-loop) and another that may be considered a specific version of the Mg(2+)-binding site of NTP-utilizing enzymes, were identified in the nucleotidyltransferase-related domain. Together with the third unique motif adjacent to the the P-loop, these motifs comprise the signature of a new superfamily of nucleotide-binding domains. A domain consisting of hexapeptide amino acid repeats with a periodic distribution of bulky hydrophobic residues (isoleucine patch), which previously have been identified in bacterial acetyltransferases, is located toward the C-terminus from the nucleotidyltransferase-related domain. Finally, at the very C-termini of GCD6, eIF-2B epsilon, and two other eukaryotic translation initiation factors, eIF-4 gamma and eIF-5, there is a previously undetected, conserved domain. It is hypothesized that the nucleotidyltransferase-related domain is directly involved in the GDP/GTP exchange, whereas the C-terminal conserved domain may be involved in the interaction of eIF-2B, eIF-4 gamma, and eIF-5 with eIF-2.

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