National Center for
3V32: Crystal Structure Of Mcpip1 N-terminal Conserved Domain
Nucleic Acids Res. (2012) 40 p.6957-6965
MCP-1-induced protein 1 (MCPIP1) plays an important role in the downregulation of the LPS-induced immune response by acting as an RNase targeting IL-6 and IL-12b mRNAs. A conserved domain located in the N-terminal part of MCPIP1 is thought to be responsible for its RNase activity, but its catalytic mechanism is not well understood due to the lack of an atomic resolution structure. We determined the 3D crystal structure of this MCPIP1 N-terminal conserved RNase domain at a resolution of 2.0 A. The overall structure of MCPIP1 N-terminal conserved domain shares high structural homology with PilT N-terminal domain. We show that the RNase catalytic center is composed of several acidic residues, verifying their importance by site-specific mutagenesis. A positively charged arm close to the catalytic center may act as an RNA substrate-binding site, since exchange of critical positively charged residues on this arm with alanine partially abolish the RNase activity of MCPIP1 in vivo. Our structure of the MCPIP1 N-terminal conserved domain reveals the details of the catalytic center and provides a greater understanding of the RNA degradation mechanism.