Direct recruitment and activation of caspase-9 by Apaf-1 through the homophilic CARD/CARD (Caspase Recruitment Domain) interaction is critical for the activation of caspases downstream of mitochondrial damage in apoptosis. Here we report the solution structure of the Apaf-1 CARD domain and its surface of interaction with caspase-9 CARD. Apaf-1 CARD consists of six tightly packed amphipathic alpha-helices and is topologically similar to the RAIDD CARD, with the exception of a kink observed in the middle of the N-terminal helix. By using chemical shift perturbation data, the homophilic interaction was mapped to the acidic surface of Apaf-1 CARD centered around helices 2 and 3. Interestingly, a significant portion of the chemically perturbed residues are hydrophobic, indicating that in addition to the electrostatic interactions predicted previously, hydrophobic interaction is also an important driving force underlying the CARD/CARD interaction. On the basis of the identified functional residues of Apaf-1 CARD and the surface charge complementarity, we propose a model of CARD/CARD interaction between Apaf-1 and caspase-9.
PDB ID: 1C15Download
MMDB ID: 11135
PDB Deposition Date: 1999/7/20
Updated in MMDB: 1999/11
Experimental Method:
solution nmr
Source Organism:
Similar Structures:
Molecular Components in 1C15
Label Count Molecule
Protein (1 molecule)
Apoptotic Protease Activating Factor 1(Gene symbol: APAF1)
Molecule annotation
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Citing MMDB