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FEBS Lett. 2001 May 18;497(1):45-9.

A naturally occurring bacterial Tat signal peptide lacking one of the 'invariant' arginine residues of the consensus targeting motif.

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Centre for Metalloprotein Spectroscopy and Biology, School of Biological Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK.


Currently described substrates of the bacterial Tat protein transport system are directed for export by signal peptides containing a pair of invariant arginine residues. The signal peptide of the TtrB subunit of Salmonella enterica tetrathionate reductase contains a single arginine residue but is nevertheless able to mediate Tat pathway transport. This naturally occurring example of a Tat signal peptide lacking a consensus arginine pair expands the range of sequences that can target a protein to the Tat pathway. The possible implications of this finding for the assembly of electron transfer complexes containing Rieske proteins in plant organelles are discussed.

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