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Nucleic Acids Res. 2006 Feb 22;34(4):1158-65. Print 2006.

Molecular localization of a ribosome-dependent ATPase on Escherichia coli ribosomes.

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  • 1Banting and Best Department of Medical Research, University of Toronto, 112 College Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5G 1L6.


We have previously isolated and described an Escherichia coli ribosome-bound ATPase, RbbA, that is required for protein synthesis in the presence of ATP, GTP and the elongation factors, EF-Tu and EF-G. The gene encoding RbbA, yhih, has been cloned and the deduced protein sequence harbors two ATP-motifs and one RNA-binding motif and is homologous to the fungal EF-3. Here, we describe the isolation and assay of a truncated form of the RbbA protein that is stable to overproduction and purification. Chemical protection results show that the truncated RbbA specifically protects nucleotide A937 on the 30S subunit of ribosomes, and the protected site occurs at the E-site where the tRNA is ejected upon A-site occupation. Other weakly protected bases in the region occur at or near the mRNA binding site. Using radiolabeled tRNAs, we study the stimulating effect of this truncated RbbA on the binding and release of different tRNAs bound to the (aminoacyl) A-, (peptidyl) P- and (exit) E-sites of 70S ribosomes. The combined data suggest plausible mechanisms for the function of RbbA in translation.

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