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Nat Struct Biol. 2000 Dec;7(12):1091-5.

Peroxisomal targeting signal-1 recognition by the TPR domains of human PEX5.

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Department of Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA.

Erratum in

  • Nat Struct Biol 2002 Oct;9(10):788.


Many proteins contain targeting signals within their sequences that specify their delivery to particular organelles. The peroxisomal targeting signal-1 (PTS1) is a C-terminal tripeptide that is sufficient to direct proteins into peroxisomes. The PTS1 sequence closely approximates Ser-Lys-Leu-COO-. PEX5, the receptor for PTS1, interacts with the signal via a series of tetratricopeptide repeats (TPRs) within its C-terminal half. Here we report the crystal structure of a fragment of human PEX5 that includes all seven predicted TPR motifs in complex with a pentapeptide containing a PTS1 sequence. Two clusters of three TPRs almost completely surround the peptide, while a hinge region, previously identified as TPR4, forms a distinct structure that enables the two sets of TPRs to form a single binding site. This structure reveals the molecular basis for PTS1 recognition and demonstrates a novel mode of TPR-peptide interaction.

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