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Bioessays. 1999 Nov;21(11):932-9.

The tetratricopeptide repeat: a structural motif mediating protein-protein interactions.

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Protein-Structure-Function Research Programme, Department of Cell Biology, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.


The tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR) motif is a protein-protein interaction module found in multiple copies in a number of functionally different proteins that facilitates specific interactions with a partner protein(s). Three-dimensional structural data have shown that a TPR motif contains two antiparallel alpha-helices such that tandem arrays of TPR motifs generate a right-handed helical structure with an amphipathic channel that might accommodate the complementary region of a target protein. Most TPR-containing proteins are associated with multiprotein complexes, and there is extensive evidence indicating that TPR motifs are important to the functioning of chaperone, cell-cycle, transcription, and protein transport complexes. The TPR motif may represent an ancient protein-protein interaction module that has been recruited by different proteins and adapted for specific functions. BioEssays 1999;21:932-939.

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