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Nat Struct Biol. 2001 Aug;8(8):669-73.

Crystal structure of the human ubiquitin conjugating enzyme complex, hMms2-hUbc13.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, T6G-2H7, Canada.


The ubiquitin conjugating enzyme complex Mms2-Ubc13 plays a key role in post-replicative DNA repair in yeast and the NF-kappaB signal transduction pathway in humans. This complex assembles novel polyubiquitin chains onto yet uncharacterized protein targets. Here we report the crystal structure of a complex between hMms2 (Uev1) and hUbc13 at 1.85 A resolution and a structure of free hMms2 at 1.9 A resolution. These structures reveal that the hMms2 monomer undergoes a localized conformational change upon interaction with hUbc13. The nature of the interface provides a physical basis for the preference of Mms2 for Ubc13 as a partner over a variety of other structurally similar ubiquitin-conjugating enzymes. The structure of the hMms2-hUbc13 complex provides the conceptual foundation for understanding the mechanism of Lys 63 multiubiquitin chain assembly and for its interactions with the RING finger proteins Rad5 and Traf6.

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