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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2003 Feb 28;219(2):219-24.

The FliS chaperone selectively binds the disordered flagellin C-terminal D0 domain central to polymerisation.

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Cambridge University Department of Pathology, Tennis Court Road, CB2 1QP, Cambridge, UK.


Assembly of each Salmonella typhimurium flagellum filament requires export and polymerisation of ca. 30000 flagellin (FliC) subunits. This is facilitated by the cytosolic chaperone FliS, which binds to the 494 residue FliC and inhibits its polymerisation. Yeast two-hybrid assays, co-purification and affinity blotting showed that FliS binds specifically to the C-terminal 40 amino acid component of the disordered D0 domain central to polymerisation. Without FliS binding, the C-terminus is degraded. Our data provide further support for the view that FliS is a domain-specific bodyguard preventing premature monomer interaction.

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